Wednesday, December 8, 2010

So this thing called parenting....


It's HARD!!!


It's also rewarding, exhausting, emotionally charged, challenging, precious & I wouldn't trade it for the world.


There is no grey area in parenting. There is however, a very fine line in which we must walk like an acrobat on a tight rope. It's moment by moment, I have discovered. I've also learned that there is NOTHING that can make you hurt more or make you feel that overwhelming love that seems as if your heart will explode.


I've learned (& it took me a LONG time) that showing grace & love is more convicting than yelling, screaming, or throwing a plain ole' fit will do. The one thing I want my kids to realize is that no matter what, I love them unconditionally. Yes, there will be consequences for bad decisions at times. But there is also redemption. The one thing I fear is that my kids will try to please me so much that they lose sight of who they are & they play a role.


As much as I love my kids, I know that God loves them even more than I do. That's why it's easy to leave them in His hands. I want me kids to strive to not please me but to have a relationship with our Heavenly Father & strive to do His work here on Earth.


I am blessed with great kids in which I feel we have a special bond. I've tried both ways... The tyrant & the loving, graceful parent. The fine line exists still but it's up to you to decide which one is the way God would have us go.

Monday, December 6, 2010

December....


I am not a fan of it. I used to be hot natured but now I freeze all the time. I don't care for the dreary weather. I need sunshine, the grey overcast skies just make me blah however just like the winter's on our lives I know we must go through this to experience the beauty of spring.


One would think that a basketball nut like me would love winter but more & more I enjoy summer better. Basketball, well it's just a game. There was a time where it wasn't just a game to us, it was our life. Don't get me wrong, I am a sports fanatic. I like basketball, soccer, baseball & my new love football but it doesn't control my life.


Sports have taught my kids some real valuable life lessons & I am happy they participate in so many of them. I love watching my kids play sports. Cole is in basketball right now & he absolutely loves basketball. He will be playing travel soccer in the spring so that is a new adventure for us. Aimee will have her first college softball season this spring & I intend to make every game of hers. It will be a lot of traveling but it's important for me to be there. So, for now I will bundle up & ride out the winter!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

2 Corinthians 12:1-10
1 This boasting will do no good, but I must go on. I will reluctantly tell about visions and revelations from the Lord. 2 I was caught up to the third heaven fourteen years ago. Whether I was in my body or out of my body, I don’t know—only God knows. 3 Yes, only God knows whether I was in my body or outside my body. But I do know 4 that I was caught up to paradise and heard things so astounding that they cannot be expressed in words, things no human is allowed to tell. 5 That experience is worth boasting about, but I’m not going to do it. I will boast only about my weaknesses. 6 If I wanted to boast, I would be no fool in doing so, because I would be telling the truth. But I won’t do it, because I don’t want anyone to give me credit beyond what they can see in my life or hear in my message, 7 even though I have received such wonderful revelations from God. So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud. 8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Now from the message:

1 You’ve forced me to talk this way, and I do it against my better judgment. But now that we’re at it, I may as well bring up the matter of visions and revelations that God gave me. 2 For instance, I know a man who, fourteen years ago, was seized by Christ and swept in ecstasy to the heights of heaven. I really don’t know if this took place in the body or out of it; only God knows. 3 I also know that this man was hijacked into paradise—again, whether in or out of the body, I don’t know; God knows. There he heard the unspeakable spoken, but was forbidden to tell what he heard. 5 This is the man I want to talk about. But about myself, I’m not saying another word apart from the humiliations. 6 If I had a mind to brag a little, I could probably do it without looking ridiculous, and I’d still be speaking plain truth all the way. But I’ll spare you. I don’t want anyone imagining me as anything other than the fool you’d encounter if you saw me on the street or heard me talk. 7 Because of the extravagance of those revelations, and so I wouldn’t get a big head, I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me in constant touch with my limitations. Satan’s angel did his best to get me down; what he in fact did was push me to my knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty! 8 At first I didn’t think of it as a gift, and begged God to remove it. Three times I did that, 9 and then he told me,

My grace is enough; it’s all you need.

My strength comes into its own in your weakness.

Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness. 10 Now I take limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut me down to size—abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become.


No one knows for sure what Paul's thorn was but we do know that he asked 3 times for it to be taken away. But God didn't grant that prayer. He did however get things greater because he got grace from God, a stronger character, humility & an ability to empathize with others. It also benefited those around him in that they saw God at work in his life. We don't know why some people are spared & others not. We must pray, believe & trust. Nothing separates us from God's love (Romans 8:35-39). & our spiritual condition is always more important than our physical condition.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My grouping gals, the Ya Ya's & I have started a new study. It's "deepening life together a study in Romans". I won't lie, it's been tough in spots but it is a good one.

Last week I handed out a Spiritual Gift Inventory sheet. Many had never done one before. Unlike myself, I've done several hoping for a different gift. I know how silly is that!! Anyway, this one has 112 questions on it & then you tallied them in a certain order to get your gifts. I did mine & got 2 out of the same 3 I usually get. I just can't seem to shake one lol. Just kidding, a spiritual gift is something God equips you with in order to fulfill His work. It aids us in what we are to do for the Kingdom.

If you haven't done one before I encourage you to do so. The one we used is found at http://www.spreadinglight.com/biblestudy/gifts/gifttest.html

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The very same voice that raised the dead is the same one who still speaks today.

Think about that for a minute. The same God that parted the sea, the same God that healed the leaper, made the lame walk, the same One whose arms were nailed to a cross for OUR sins.

Do we really fathom that? If we did, I dare say we would have much more reverence for Him than we often do. It's so easy to go through life & try to do it ourselves. And boy can that get U-G-L-Y!! This momma can get all tangled in emotions & look out cause she is gonna explode but confessing our dependance on Jesus can calm that storm a' brewing.

Try it today & see what happens!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I'm reading the book Magnificent Obsession (btw, if I ever get to be a lay director on a walk that will be the theme) anyway, it's by Anne Graham Lotz. This paragraph stuck with me. (Maybe I'll quit asking for those flashing neon billboards).
"And then it hit me: God shows up in the ordinariness of our day, doesn't He? He doesn't show up only when He parts the Red Sea with a powerful wind, or in the banquet hall with handwriting on the wall, or on Mount Sinai with thunder & lightning, or on the Mount of Transfiguration in radiant glory. He shows up in everyday situations, as we are going about our everyday responsibilities in our everyday routines."


It's OUR job to stop long enough to see & hear Him. Have you seen Him lately?? If not I challenge you to stop & listen for His still, small voice.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Guest Blog!

Thanks Christy for letting me “guest blog” - - we’ll see if you loose a few followers after this LOL !!!

 You know, God didn’t say life was going to be easy, He said it’s going to be worth it!

  He didn’t say it was going to be comfortable, He said it’s going to be worth it!

  He didn’t say it was going to go just how I want it, He said it’s going to be worth it!

  

I strive to know Him more.

  Even on the days when I have the “cruise control” on, He calls me to dig deeper, to press on.

  I love the song “Press On” by Selah.

  It speaks to me on many different ways.

  Today, this is what is going through my mind;

  “If I’m going to press on, does that require ACTION from me?”

  I think it does.

  

As the Body of Christ, we must move.

  As believers in HIS holy power and might, we must move.

  There are days when I feel like I’m standing out there all by myself and other days when I feel like I have 1000 others tugging the line with me.

  Either way, Jesus is with me . . . if I lean on Him, if I press on toward His will for me, I will win the ETERNAL VICTORY – PRAISE GOD!!

  

So today friends whatever mountain you face, whatever valley is in your path, know that He holds us if we “PRESS ON” toward His will for our lives.

  It’s not about us, it’s all about Him.

  

Keyly Watts

  

 

 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Press On




I've been asked to work another Emmaus walk this spring. The theme is Press On &
the song is from Selah with the same title Press On.

This song was used on Cole's Chrysalis, as well as another walk I worked. It has
resonated with me. I've been "challenged" to blog about it & soon I will have a
guest blog!!

This is what I wrote to a dear friend today before she gave me "the
challenge"...

I believe there are so many women that deal with "fear" issues & they live
defeated. This theme will touch SO many people team & pilgrims alike. "In Jesus
name, we press on". In Jesus name not my name not your name, in Jesus name.
Amen!!

Life deals us great joys as well as great trials BUT how do we respond to the
ups & downs?

I've often heard that we grow the most in the valleys of life. Not on the
mountaintop. But, who wants to go through the valleys?!?! Not me!

However, we do have to go through those dark times. If you are anything like me
when those times hit it's SO easy to give up & live defeated. But we don't have
to! Did you hear that?!?! We DON'T HAVE TO! In Jesus name we press on! Press on
toward Him & all his riches. He wants to lavish His love on us but why do we
hold back?

Fear

Such an ugly word that controlled my life for SO SO long due to things in my
past that were beyond my control but that I was dealt with. I let the ole scum
dog use it against me UNTIL one day I realized I didn't have to live like that.
Now, let me say that once I realized that my life wasn't all of the sudden all
hearts & flowers. Life is tough, let's face it, it is BUT we MUST press on
toward the ultimate goal.

Jesus is worth it people, he redeemed us long ago. It's our turn to live life
abundantly through Him!!

Read these words to this song & ponder on them.


Press On by Selah

When the valley is deep
When the mountain is steep
When the body is weary
When we stumble and fall

When the choices are hard
When we're battered and scarred
When we've spent our resources
When we've given our all

In Jesus' name, we press on
In Jesus' name, we press on
Dear Lord, with the prize clear before our eyes
We find the strength to press on

In Jesus' name, we press on
In Jesus' name, we press on
Dear Lord, with the prize clear before our eyes
We find the strength to press on
We find the strength to press on, to press on

Friday, September 3, 2010

Let Go

I find it timely that God gave a message to someone just Thursday that has spoken to my inner being in a profound way.

That message was "Let Go".

God is saying let go, let go of expectations, wants, hurts, brokeness, unfogiveness, things, people... LET GO, I will catch you. I want you to walk in MY ways not yours. To want what I want, heavenly things not earthly things.

He is calling not only me to let go but you as well... What is it that you need to let go of?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Move in day

Today we moved Aimee to college. Although I am excited for her future it is sad to drive off and leave her. It will be a long week but we will survive!!


Saturday, August 7, 2010

Who's in charge?

I read this devotional today & thought I'd pass it along.


The plans of the mind belong to mortals, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD. All one's ways may be pure in one's own eyes, but the LORD weighs the spirit. Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.
-Proverbs 16:1-3 (NRSV)

Today's Scripture
Cast all your anxiety on [God], because he cares for you.
-1 Peter 5:7 (NRSV)


ON my patio, where I say my morning prayers and study my Bible, is a white director's chair. Written on it in big red letters, are the words "God Is the Director." I had the chair made because I wanted to see the message as a daily reminder.I tend to forget that God is the one in charge.

As a wife and mother, I sometimes want to direct my husband and my children. As an employee, I often think I know better than my boss. I disagree with people, neighbors, and politicians. Trying to be the director destroys my peace. While I sometimes have the right or the duty to express my ideas, I can't make anyone act on them.

My chair reminds me to give all my cares and concerns to God. God is not only my director but the director of all our lives. God is running the show, not us.Daily, I ask God for my script. I don't worry about the parts other people are playing. I let God direct them. I tell God my concerns, and I ask what God wants me to do. Most of the time, God tells me to let go.

When I'm the director, the show doesn't always turn out well. Letting God be the director insures the best for everyone.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Red Lights

Do you realize when God is giving you red lights?


Often times red lights are put in our paths but we either choose to ignore them & blow on through or we just don't recognize them as red lights. There is a story in Numbers that is one of my favorite stories in the Bible. It is is chapter 22 starting with verse 21. I'm going to paraphrase here so it may not be exact!! There's this guy named Balaam that was called by Balak basically to put a curse on Israel so that God would turn againts his people. (Like God wouldn't see through this) but we do this, don't we?!?! Anyway, Balaam sets out on his donkey to perform this task but God wasn't happy at all with it & placed an angel in the road, when the donkey saw it he turned off & went into a field. Balaam beat her to get her back on the road, again an angel of the Lord stood in the path, the donkey saw this & moved so close to a wall that it crushed Balaam's foot, so yep, another beating. Yet again the angel went to the most narrow part they were traveling through where there was no room to turn so the donkey laid down. Balaam was so mad that he beat her with his staff. Here's the good part..

Wait for it...

The donkey spoke, yes you read that right. God opened her mouth & she asked Balaam what she had done for him to be beating her. This went on for a bit until the Lord opened Balaam's eyes & he saw the angel standing in the way.


Balaam realized he had sinned & said he didn't know God was standing in his way to stop him.


God will try to stop us from pursuing paths that will lead to destruction or harm us. He won't force us to stop but he will try to get us to stop & think about it then he will either put more hurt to get us to top or he will let us carry on & suffer the consequences.


Do you need a donkey to speak to you right now in your life???

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Changes

So, since I have gotten married I have, ahem, gained a few extra pounds. That's being nice! So, my wedding ring doesn't fit. I quit wearing it a while back for this reason & I'm just not a jewlery person. However, I have been amazed at just how many people pay attention to this sort of thing. My boss even approached me a while back & asked if everything was ok. I said yes why do you ask & he said some co-workers had noticed I've not been wearing my ring.

Seriously?!?!

Then today a guy stopped at the gate, I addressed him with my usual hi, have a nice day spill & he looked at my hand, looked back up & said you too, Miss.


Oh well, not only the extra pounds but I have discovered patches of gray in my hair. What the heck?!?! I'm 30...something. I shouldn't be getting gray hair already, right??? (Indulge me here people).


Changes happen. That's a part of life. Some changes I like & some I just dread. Like the approaching task ahead of moving Aimee to college. Ed says I don't get it, she'll be home on the weekends. I say it's not the same as having her home everyday. Then in 3 short years Cole will be folowing suit. Ed is looking forward to it but not this mom!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Have you ever noticed just how easy it is to get distracted?? Maybe it's my ADHD but I think most people have the same issues with it!


You're chugging along just fine when the next thing you know you haven't picked up your Bible in a couple of days, or you haven't prayed like you should.


The ole' scum dog is SO good at getting in our mind and keeping us distracted. Our job is to learn to recognize when he is doing this and start taking our thoughts captive. It isn't an easy practice and just when you think you have it mastered it surprises you when you don't!


I get distracted very easy and can get my ole feather's ruffled quite easy as well. I have been working on that hard for a few years now but every now and then I have that occasional mouth overloading the brain syndrome then feel guilty later on. The good thing is no matter how much we neglect God or say things we shouldn't or yell at the dog or whatever He still loves us and wants a relationship with us. That my friends is a reassuring thing!




Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is -- his good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).

Monday, July 12, 2010

I read this verse today & it made me realize that we need to be living in the reality of God's love for us. Not just say we know he loves us & yada, yada but actually live it out daily!!

Isaiah 54:10 Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed yet God's unfailing love for you will not be shaken.

Through everything, every situation; kids screaming, laundry piling up, bills due, meetings to attend, kids leaving for college (ehhh). Through it ALL if we live the reality that God loves us... REALLY loves us then we can have a "walking faith" that gets us through it all everyday

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Barefoot Bandit

I must admit I have been fascinated to be reading about this kid that being said if he were my son I wouldn't think it was so "neat"!



Barefoot Bandit's Mom: 'I Think It's Kind of Neat'

David Lohr
Contributor

AOL News (July 7) -- For more than two years, lawmen have been hunting Colton Harris-Moore, the elusive 19-year-old "Barefoot Bandit" they believe is responsible for hundreds of burglaries and the theft of at least three airplanes and a $450,000 yacht. Today his mother considers him a harmless kid, but the FBI has a $10,000 reward out for him and may be moving in on an arrest.

"Colt is highly intelligent," his mother, Pam Kohler, said in an exclusive interview with AOL News. "He's just living his life. He's not hurting anybody really, physically, I mean. I think it's kind of neat."

Not everyone shares that view, and a hero-vs.-villain debate is playing out between law enforcement and an Internet-driven fan base.


Island County Sheriff's Office / AP
A self-portrait of Colton Harris-Moore, who police believe to be the "Barefoot Bandit" responsible for hundreds of burglaries and the theft of three airplanes and a yacht.
According to Kohler, Harris-Moore grew up with her on a five-acre plot on Camano Island, Wash. His father walked out on the family when Colton was just 2 years old, but the void was filled by a stepfather whom Kohler says her son grew to love as his own.

But the father-figure did not stay in Harris-Moore's life for long: He died not long after Harris-Moore's seventh birthday. Kohler said the loss of his stepfather "devastated" her son.

Not long thereafter, Harris-Moore began to change and appeared to "disconnect" himself from the outside world, she said.

"There was no father here, so I figured I got to play both parts," Kohler said. "I did my best with him, but he has a strong mind and, when he sets it to something, he does it. We fought like hell when he was at home."

At age 12, Harris-Moore had his first taste of the justice system when he was convicted of theft. Other convictions soon followed, but Kohler says he was often accused of committing crimes for which he was not responsible.

"[The police] were always after him on Camano Island," Kohler said. "One time, I bought him a new bike, and they stopped him on the side of the road, put it in the back of the car, brought him here, and the cop opened the trunk and said, 'Is this Colt's?' I said 'Yes. I just bought it for him.' Because I am poor they did not think I could have bought it for him, and [they] thought he stole it. That's what they used to do all the time -- harass and mistreat him."

Harris-Moore's problems with the law continued, and, in 2007, he was charged with 23 felonies in Island County.

"It was ridiculous," Kohler said. "They made such a big damn deal of everything. He was blamed for everything that happened in [the] county. [The police] even took some of my jewelry, tried to say that he stole it, and put it in evidence against him."

One of the people helping in Harris-Moore's defense was Shauna Snyder, a private investigator and paralegal in Washington State.

"He was charged with residential burglaries," Snyder told AOL News. "There were 23 felonies and, like often happens, the prosecutor did not feel like they had a strong enough case on all of them, and the defense team was able to plea bargain it down. He was 16 years old at the time and sentenced to just about three years. He spent part of it in a juvenile hall and was then transferred to a group home."

There was more freedom for him at the group home, but Harris-Moore -- not one to be "confined," as his mom explained -- did not stay there long; he fled from the facility in April 2008.

Today, more than two years after his escape, Harris-Moore is suspected in countless burglaries round the country, including Washington, Idaho, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa and Illinois. He is also believed to have committed crimes in Canada and, most recently, the Bahamas. While some of the alleged crimes include burglaries and auto thefts, Harris-Moore is also suspected in the theft of at least three airplanes and a $450,000 yacht.


According to Harris-Moore's mother, he never learned how to fly, evident by the fact that each of the planes he is suspected of stealing has crash-landed. Authorities speculate that Harris-Moore taught himself how to fly by reading aircraft manuals and handbooks.

"I think [the plane thefts are] pretty gutsy," Kohler said. "He just needs to work on his landings. I've also said he should take a parachute."

Since many of Harris-Moore's alleged crimes were committed while he was barefoot, the media dubbed him the "Barefoot Bandit."

Those who know Harris-Moore say he's not the violent type.

"Colton dislikes guns," Kohler said. "I asked him to go to the gun range with me one time, and he didn't want to go. He said, 'No way. I'm not shooting guns.'"

Snyder agrees.

"He's not a violent kid," she said, adding that recent rumors that Harris-Moore had stolen an AK-47 out of a police cruiser are just that: rumors.

"There have never been, to date, any charges filed on any crime like that," Snyder said. "So, if they had evidence of that they would have filed it. Those kinds of rumors and rhetoric have made him sound more dangerous than he is. He's been accused of about every crime this side of the Mississippi now."

Harold Copus, a former FBI agent who has worked hundreds of violent crimes over the years, also doubts claims that Harris-Moore is a violent kid.

"This is not a guy who will turn to violence," said Copus, who heads up Copus Security Consultants in Atlanta. "This is a guy who loves thumbing his nose at authorities. He's not really done anything that is more than just the average garden-variety crime. If I was a victim of that, I would probably take offense to it, but really that's what you get down to.

"It's almost the stuff that legends are made of," Copus continued. "He's creating his own, and I'll bet you they'll be talking about him 30 or 40 years from now."

Not only have several folk-hero-style ballads been written about Harris-Moore, but he also has a huge fan following on the Internet. A Facebook fan page dedicated to him boasts more than 44,000 fans.

"He's out there doing stuff a lot of people would not dare to," said Adin Stevens, founder of the Colton Harris Moore Fan Club. "There are a lot of haves and have nots in the world. [For instance,] this kid would probably have never had the opportunity to fly airplanes, but, there he is -- doing all these things on a whim, and I think that appeals to a lot of people."

Stevens, who owns a screen printing business in Seattle, said he became a fan of Harris-Moore's about a year ago and started selling T-shirts with Harris-Moore's photo and the phrase "Momma Tried." The shirts flew off the shelves and eventually led to the creation of the fan site, which Stevens says brings in thousands of visitors every day.

"He's a modern-day outlaw," Stevens said. "He's building a name for himself, and I think he's enjoying that."

Even Copus says he can't help but chuckle whenever he reads about Harris-Moore in the news.

"You can almost draw a parallel to the times of John Dillinger or Bonnie and Clyde," Copus said. "Now, what they did was obviously more violent, but, at the time, the American people were going through some bad times, and most people are going through a bad time right now, so this is a little bit of the little guys winning right now, and people are cheering him on."

Despite Harris-Moore's attraction and near folk-hero status, not everyone is laughing at his antics -- chief among them Sheriff Mark C. Brown, from the Island County Sheriff's Office.

"I don't agree with it," Brown tells AOL News. "I don't like the sensationalistic media blitz that's taken off about looking at that person as an adult hero. I think he's an adult felon who needs to be caught and sent off to prison."

Former island resident David Peters has taken it upon himself to ferret out Harris-Moore and has created a website devoted to catching him. Like Stevens, Peters also sells shirts on his site, but the message is clearly different: "I support safe communities, not fake heroes," reads one T-shirt, accompanied by Harris-Moore's police mug shot.

"[I] started the website because I noticed there were a lot of articles out there, and [Stevens'] website was contributing to this folk-hero status," Peters told AOL News. "I knew some of the people from the smaller communities in the Northwest, and I knew they did not agree with what the website was saying, and I knew they didn't look at him as a folk hero or any kind of hero."

Peters said he has received some tips via the website, which he has passed on to law enforcement, but his main goal is to continue raising the reward fund so that someone who might be assisting Harris-Moore will "do the right thing" and turn him in.

Peters speculated that Harris-Moore could be taken into custody within the month, and he may be correct.

On Tuesday, the FBI announced that they had a "solid indication" that Harris-Moore is responsible for the weekend theft of an aircraft from a hangar in Bloomington, Ind. The plane was found crashed and abandoned Sunday off the coast of Abaco Island in the Bahamas. As a result of the incident, the FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the "Barefoot Bandit."

"Colton Harris-Moore has gone from a regional nuisance to an international problem," Special Agent Steven Dean with the bureau's Seattle office told KOMO 4 News. "We need to step up our efforts to get him."

Today, authorities on Abaco Island are continuing a large-scale search for Harris-Moore and are investigating his possible connection to a vehicle theft that occurred not far from where the plane crashed.

"It was probably him," Harris-Moore's mother said, adding, "We've not talked in the last few weeks, but the last time we did he was doing good. I tried to talk him into turning himself in because I got him one of the best damn lawyers around, but because he's a kid and I'm a mother -- ya know, kids just don't listen to their mothers."

While she said she would like to see Harris-Moore again, Kohler said that, at this point, he would probably be better off heading to a non-extraditing country where he could finally live in peace.

"It's gone on so long that I pray it keeps on going; otherwise, he might get hurt," she said. "And if he gets hurt, it won't be because of him. It will be because of overzealous cops."

Despite the fact that her son is constantly on the run and keeps in touch only on a sporadic basis, Kohler said she does believe he follows articles that are written about him.

"Tell him to send me a round-trip ticket to the Bahamas," she said. "I mean it. Can you print that? I've never been there, but [I've] been wanting to go all my life. [If he does,] I'll send you a post card."

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wild Olive Tees

Wild Olive



These shirts are so great! Check out their website!
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. — Colossians 4:2 NIV

It’s easy to get so caught up in the physical challenges of our days that we forget the very real spiritual battle that rages on around us. We have an enemy who would love to keep us so distracted and busy that we forget to focus on what really matters: our relationship with our Father. Jesus knew this and he purposely pulled away, not only from the crowds, but even from his friends, to be able to be alone with his Father. He obviously craved that time to restore himself.

Of course, not all of us are refreshed by being alone the way Jesus was. Each of us has a unique, God-given personality that affects how easily we’re distracted and by what, what helps us refocus and what doesn’t.What matters is finding a place where you know you can block out other distractions and enjoy being with the Father, who longs to spend time with you.

Even more important is making the commitment to fight our human tendency toward distraction. Sometimes I will take a notebook and write down twenty things that I love about being God’s daughter.

I can only imagine that our specific declarations of love to God are precious to him.

— Sheila Walsh Excerpted from A Grand New Day © 2008 by Thomas Nelson

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I received the following in an email & thought it was too good not to share. All too often we try to do things on our own.



Monday, July 05, 2010

God made you to work with others

by Rick Warren


For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)

"As you walk through life, remember that you're not supposed to do everything on your own. You need other people to walk alongside you, but you also need other people to work alongside you."

God put us on earth to do a certain work that only we can do. Ephesians says that God made us to do good works and that he planned in advance what we would live our lives doing. However, he didn't plan for us to do that work alone. We need people to work with us.

You know the feeling you get when you do too much work on your own. You get exhausted and burned out. Why? Because you're trying to do your work alone, while God never meant for you to go through life working alone.

God tells us in Ecclesiastes 4:9 that "two people are better than one, because they get more done by working together" (NCV). When you work as a team, you get so much more done. Plus, having good teammates alongside you is a whole lot more fun and less tiring!

Picture this: Individually, each of us is like a snowflake; on our own, we can't make a big difference. However, when one fragile snowflake sticks together with a lot of other snowflakes, they can stop traffic. Like snowflakes, we can make a big difference if we work together, each one of us doing only our small part.

Did you know that when we work together here on earth, we're actually practicing for eternity? In heaven, we will all have to work, but each of us will have just a small piece of work, so we'll never get overloaded or tired. Still, though no one will carry a heavy burden as each one of us does our small part, all the work will get done.
As you walk through life, remember that you're not supposed to do everything on your own. You need other people to walk alongside you, but you also need other people to work alongside you. As you share the burden of your work with fellow Christians, you'll find that you actually accomplish more for the glory of God.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

RAGGED OLD FLAG

I walked through a county courthouse square,
On a park bench an old man was sitting there.
I said, "Your old courthouse is kinda run down."
He said, "Naw, it'll do for our little town."
I said, "Your flagpole has leaned a little bit,
And that's a Ragged Old Flag you got hanging on it.


He said, "Have a seat", and I sat down.
"Is this the first time you've been to our little town?"
I said, "I think it is." He said, "I don't like to brag,
But we're kinda proud of that Ragged Old Flag."


"You see, we got a little hole in that flag there
When Washington took it across the Delaware.
And it got powder-burned the night Francis Scott Key
Sat watching it writing _Oh Say Can You See_.
And it got a bad rip in New Orleans
With Packingham and Jackson tuggin' at its seams."


"And it almost fell at the Alamo
Beside the Texas flag, but she waved on through.
She got cut with a sword at Chancellorsville
And she got cut again at Shiloh Hill.
There was Robert E. Lee, Beauregard, and Bragg,
And the south wind blew hard on that Ragged Old Flag."


"On Flanders Field in World War I
She got a big hole from a Bertha gun.
She turned blood red in World War II
She hung limp and low by the time it was through.
She was in Korea and Vietnam.
She went where she was sent by her Uncle Sam."


"She waved from our ships upon the briny foam,
And now they've about quit waving her back here at home.
In her own good land she's been abused --
She's been burned, dishonored, denied and refused."


"And the government for which she stands
Is scandalized throughout the land.
And she's getting threadbare and wearing thin,
But she's in good shape for the shape she's in.
'Cause she's been through the fire before
And I believe she can take a whole lot more."


"So we raise her up every morning,
Take her down every night.
We don't let her touch the ground
And we fold her up right.
On second thought I DO like to brag,
'Cause I'm mighty proud of that Ragged Old Flag."


Written by Johnny Cash

Friday, July 2, 2010

Nudge

I was lovingly reminded by a dear friend today that I have not updated my blog in 7 weeks.... wow, that is almost 2 months! Now, it isn't that I didn't know this. I knew it and I check other blogs often but it is that I really couldn't find anything that I thought you all would want to hear me talk about or it would probably turn into a whining party! But here I am...


The last time that I did blog I talked about Isaiah 6:8 "Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, "Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?" Then I said, "Here am I. Send me!" This verse keeps tugging at my heart and to be honest I haven't really spent as much time with God lately as I should be (hence the absence of blogging I suppose). All too often I am a stubborn, impatient person. I know, I know you just can't believe that, unless you know me well than you are laughing to yourself thinking "no way" in the most condescending voice you can come up with!





When I heard the verse it struck a cord with me deep down but I just couldn't figure out why or what God was telling me. But did I persist to figure it out? nope, I just kinda ran away from it until today when dear sweet Keyly emailed me to "nudge" me along. I am SOO thankful for good Christian friends that can put a little perspective back in our lives and ask the hard questions of us. When I read her email I though yea yea, I know but as I began to ponder on it I knew it was from God. SO, I am on my quest once again to figure out where God wants me to go and dear friends would you pray with me that I figure it out soon?



What can we pray about for you all??



Thanks Keyly for listening to the "nudge" to email me today!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Whom shall I send?

One of my favorite verses is Isaiah 6:8 "Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, Whom shall I send? And who will go for us? And I said Here am I. Send me.


Isaiah is becoming one of my favorite people in the Bible. Sorry Moses, I still love your studdering, & your feelings on unworthiness because I so relate BUT I'm taking a new approach. Isaiah was active, but he didn't set out to be a prophet. He was a scribe in the royal palace in Jerusalem. A good career but God had other plans. His encounter with God forever changed him. He portrayed the God he served. God didn't tell him he would have great success, as a matter of fact God told him the people wouldn't listen.


Now I don't know about you but if God told me to preach, write & minister to people who wouldn't listen to me I'm not sure I would have continued BUT isn't that where we are often times in our daily walk with the Lord? Sometimes we talk to people about God they simply don't want to listen but should that stop us?


We can use Isaiah as an example to respond to God with "Here am I Lord, send me".

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Music for the Dance
by Max Lucado

Let's imagine that you want to learn to dance. Being the rational, cerebral person you are, you go to a bookstore and buy a book on dancing.You take the book home and get to work. You do everything it says.

The book says sway; you sway. The book says shuffle; you shuffle. The book says spin; you spin.Finally, you think you’ve got it, and you invite your wife to come in and watch. You hold the book open and follow the instructions step by step.You continue to read, then dance, read, then dance, until the dance is completed. You plop exhausted on the couch, look at your wife, and proclaim, “I executed it perfectly.”“You executed it, all right,” she sighs. “You killed it.”“What?”“You forgot the most important part. Where is the music?”

Music?

We Christians are prone to follow the book while ignoring the music. We master the doctrine, outline the chapters, memorize the dispensations, debate the rules, and stiffly step down the dance floor of life with no music in our hearts. We measure each step, calibrate each turn, and flop into bed each night exhausted from another day of dancing by the book.Dancing with no music is tough stuff.Jesus knew that. For that reason, on the night before his death he introduced the disciples to the song maker of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. (John 16:7–9).Of the three persons of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit is the one we understand the least. Perhaps the most common mistake made regarding the Spirit is perceiving him as a power but not a person, a force with no identity. Such is not true.The Holy Spirit is not an “it.” He is a person. He has knowledge (1 Cor. 2:11). He has a will (1 Cor. 12:11). He has a mind (Rom. 8:27). He has affections (Rom. 15:30). You can lie to him (Acts 5:3–4). You can insult him (Heb. 10:29). You can grieve him (Eph. 4:30).The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force. He is not Popeye’s spinach or the surfer’s wave. He is God within you to help you. In fact John calls him the Helper.Envision a father helping his son learn to ride a bicycle, and you will have a partial picture of the Holy Spirit. The father stays at the son’s side. He pushes the bike and steadies it if the boy starts to tumble. The Spirit does that for us; he stays our step and strengthens our stride. Unlike the father, however, he never leaves. He is with us to the end of the age.What does the Spirit do?He comforts the saved. (John 16:7).He convicts the lost. (John 16:8).He conveys the truth. (John 16:12).Is John saying we don’t need the book in order to dance? Of course not; he helped write it. Emotion without knowledge is as dangerous as knowledge without emotion. God seeks a balance. “God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:24).

What is essential is that you know the music is in you. “If Christ is in you, then the Spirit gives you life” (Rom. 8:10). You don’t need a formula to hear it. I don’t have a four-step plan to help you know it. What I do have is his promise that the helper would come to comfort, convict, and convey.

So think about it; have you ever been comforted? Has God ever brought you peace when the world brought you pain? Then you heard the music.Have you ever been convicted? Have you ever sensed a stab of sorrow for your actions? Then you’ve been touched by the Holy Spirit.

Or have you ever understood a new truth? Or seen an old principle in a new way? The light comes on. Your eyes pop open. “Aha, now I understand.” Ever happen to you? If so, that was the Holy Spirit conveying to you a new truth.What do you know? He’s been working in your life already.By the way, for those of us who spent years trying to do God’s job, that is great news. It’s much easier to raise the sail than row the boat. And it’s a lot easier getting people to join the dance when God is playing the music.That’s what makes God, God.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Tent City

As I pulled up to the paper dispenser this morning the short, white headed & white bearded elderly man on the front page caught my eye. If you know me at all you know that I absolutely adore elderly people, especially the adorable little old men.


The article had me curious so as I began to read it I began to be discouraged. You see, this man named Hal Taylor, of Bloomington, has taken it upon himself to provide shelter for homeless people in the way of tents in his backyard. A friend of his picks the homeless up each night at 9 & takes them to Taylor's house then at 8 the next morning they are picked up & taken back to town.

Now at this point this sounds like the story is applauding this man's effort to help out the less fortunate. Not the case at all, it is about the uproar the neighbors are causing & wanting the city to do something about it. As I continued to read I was shocked at the speculation that his neighbors were making. They basically were saying these homeless were you everyday run of the mill criminals that may or may not be targeting their houses to rob from.


The story went on & on about how uncomfortable they felt & how it was bring the value of their houses down.


Seriously??


Are we more worried about our comfort & the value of properties then the welfare of those around us who are more than likely homeless for no fault of their own. Even that being said who are we to judge their position?? Aren't we called to "go"? I don't ever remember reading in the Bible where we are commanded to be comfortable & stock pile possessions & shun others because they may not look like us or have the possessions we have.


So to you Hal Taylor, I say bravo! I applaud your efforts to help those around you who are less fortunate & to step out of the modern day society & reach out to those around you.


Matthew 25:40 I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

Monday, April 12, 2010

Ecclesiastes 4:12 NLT
"A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken."

As we know, the enemy prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. It is his goal is to steal, kill and destroy our joy and our REAL identity given to us by God. It is important for us to remember in ALL that we face and ALL that we do, God has provided us with other Christian SISters to encourage us, stand beside us and help us fight the good fight.

It is imperative that we have friends that will give Godly advice, speak truth in love, and help bring us closer to our Lord. Today I ask you, "Do you have YOUR cord of three strands?" If not: find two women and ask them to be your "Accountability SISters" as you fix you eyes, heart and mind upon the SIS WOW each week. Ask if they would join you Monday to get the "Word Of the Week." At the end of the week the three of you would come together, whether church, work, conference call or skype and say the Scripture together. Before you know it, you will be talking about how this verse spoke to you personally or how you were able to use it in a specific situation. And ultimately, life-long reliable friendships are formed

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Dashed Hopes
by Max Lucado

“I had intended …”

David had wanted to build a temple. And who better than he to do so?

Hadn’t he, literally, written the book on worship? Didn’t he rescue the ark of the covenant? The temple would have been his swan song, his signature deed. David had expected to dedicate his final years to building a shrine to God.

At least, that had been his intention. “I had intended to build a permanent home for the ark of the covenant of the LORD and for the footstool of our God. So I had made preparations to build it” (1 Chron. 28:2 NASB).

Intentions. Preparations. But no temple. Why? Did David grow discouraged? No. He stood willing. Were the people resistant? Hardly. They gave generously.

Then what happened?

A conjunction happened.Conjunctions operate as the signal lights of sentences. Some, such as and, are green. Others, such as however, are yellow. A few are red. Sledgehammer red. They stop you.

David got a red light.I had made preparations to build it. But God said to me, “You shall not build a house for My name because you are a man of war and have shed blood.… Your son Solomon is the one who shall build My house and My courts.” (1 Chron. 28:2–3, 6 NASB, emphasis mine)

David’s bloodthirsty temperament cost him the temple privilege. All he could do was say:I had intended …I had made preparations …But God …

I’m thinking of some people who have uttered similar words. God had different plans than they did. One man waited until his midthirties to marry. Resolved to select the right spouse, he prayerfully took his time. When he found her, they moved westward, bought a ranch, and began their life together. After three short years, she was killed in an accident.

I had intended …I had made preparations …But God …

A young couple turned a room into a nursery. They papered walls, refinished a baby crib, but then the wife miscarried.

I had intended … I had made preparations …But God …I had intended …I had made preparations …But God …

What do you do with the “but God” moments in life? When God interrupts your good plans, how do you respond?The man who lost his wife has not responded well. At this writing he indwells a fog bank of anger and bitterness. The young couple is coping better. They stay active in church and prayerful about a child. And what about David? When God changed David’s plans, how did he reply? (You’ll like this.)He followed the “but God” with a “yet God.”“Yet, the LORD, the God of Israel, chose me from all the house of my father to be king over Israel forever. For He has chosen Judah to be a leader; and in the house of Judah, my father’s house, and among the sons of my father He took pleasure in me to make me king over all Israel.” (1 Chron. 28:4 NASB)

Reduce the paragraph to a phrase, and it reads, “Who am I to complain? David had gone from runt to royalty, from herding sheep to leading armies, from sleeping in the pasture to living in the palace. When you are given an ice cream sundae, you don’t complain over a missing cherry.David faced the behemoth of disappointment with “yet God.” David trusted.His “but God” became a “yet God.”Who’s to say yours won’t become the same?From

Facing Your Giants
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 2005) Max Lucado

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

God's will for your life

I'm pretty sure God's will for my life doesn't involve snakes. That much I know!! I have had a fear for snakes & when I say fear, I mean an obessiveness about it. I had nightmares since childhood about them & they were always terrifying dreams where I would wake up screaming & standing on top of my bed. Poor Ed!! Anyway, about 6 months ago I killed the snake in my dream & I haven't had a nightmare since.


I related this to satan. In my dreams the snake represented satan & just until recently I have finally gotten it as far as God. Have I perfected "it"... Nope & I hope I would never say that I have cause that would mean I have stopped growing.


God's will for our lives is divine. An appointment by Him to further His kingdom. Are you striving to find out what that will is on your life? I'm thankful God can use me right where I am. I just pray I continue to seek ways in which to be used by him... Right where I am!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday

After he had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, "Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. Very truly, I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them."
John 13:12-16


•John's gospel describes the Last Supper without mentioning the Eucharist. Instead, it describes Jesus washing his friend's feet.


•On his knees like a servant, Jesus turned human status upside down. Do I celebrate with the community of those who serve?

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

In Remembrance of Me Cheri Keaggy

Holy Wednesday

Holy Wednesday

Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What will you give me if I betray him to you?" They paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him. Matthew 26:14-16


• There were two treacheries. Judas went out to grab his money, betrayed Jesus, and then killed himself in despair. Peter, despite his protests, would deny his Lord; he faced his own appalling guilt, then wept bitterly. His failure was not the end of the mission, but the beginning.

• Success is what I do with my failures. Teach me to trust in your love Lord, no matter what I have done, and to learn from my mistakes and even from treachery.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tuesday


Listen to me, O coastlands, pay attention, you peoples from far away! The Lord called me before I was born, while I was in my mother’s womb he named me. He made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me away. And he said to me, "You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified." But I said, "I have laboured in vain, I have spent my strength for nothing and vanity; yet surely my cause is with the Lord, and my reward with my God."
Isaiah 42:1-4


• God knows me intimately, even from my first moments. He has a plan for me; whatever talents I have, he can put to use.


• Do I stand in the Lord’s way, with my own plan? I worked hard, I tried my best but now I have nothing left to give. Is this now the lord’s time when my way seems blocked?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Holy Week

Monday

Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations. He will not cry or lift up his voice, or make it heard in the street; a bruised reed he will not break, and a dimly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow faint or be crushed until he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his teaching.
Isaiah 42:1-4


• "My servant will not cry or lift up his voice or make is heard in the street… he will faithfully bring forth justice."


• That is our mission too, Lord: not by force or violence, but by gentle, faithful persistence to bring forth justice on the earth.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Here I am....

"Here I am, Lord send me. All of my life, I make an offering".


I just heard that song by Downhere on the radio. I wasn't going to blog on it since my buddy Susan did but I think since it keeps popping up I will.


Have you ever prayed that prayer that said "Lord, I'll do what you want & go where you send"? Then as soon as you prayed it you say "as long as it's not to Africa"! Not me cause if you know me you know that's my dream but I digress....


You know what I mean when you put yourself out there to be used by God or well you do it in theory only. Thinking he wouldn't ask the important stuff of you, after all who am I, right?!?!


If you remember right he used the lowly & meek to do His work.


I urge you to honestly look at your life & pray that prayer with a sincere heart & sit back & enjoy the ride!!!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tuesday Tunes!!!

This video is awesome!! Plus it is my favorite song!!!


David Crowder Band's "O Praise Him"

Turn your ear
To Heaven and hear
The noise inside
The sound of angels
The sound of angel¡¯s songs
And all this for a King
We could join and sing
"All to Christ the King!"
How constant
How divine
This song of ours will rise
Oh, how constant
How divine
This love of ours will rise
Will rise...

CHORUS:
O praise Him!
O praise Him!
He is Holy!
He is Holy, yeah!

Turn your gaze
To Heaven and raise
A joyous noise
Oh, the sound of salvation come
The sound of rescued ones
And all this for a king
Angles join to sing
"All for Christ the King!"

CHORUS [2x]

Oh la la la la la...

O pra-ise Him!
O pra-ise Him!
He is Ho-ly!
He is Ho-ly!

How infininte and sweet
This love so rescuing
Oh how infinitely sweet
This great love that has redeemed
As one, we sing...

"Hallelujah!
Hallelujah!
He is Ho-ly!
He is Ho-ly!" [2x]

O pra-ise Him!
O pra-ise Him!
He is Ho-ly!
He is Ho-ly!

Oh, La la la la la la...

"Hallelujah!
Hallelujah!
He is Ho-ly!
He is Ho-ly!"

O pra-ise Him!
O pra-ise Him!
He is Ho-ly!
He is Ho-ly!

Oh la la la la la la...

Monday, March 22, 2010

It's a jungle out there

We are doing the Bible study "Traveling Light" by Max Lucado in our Sunday school class.


Now, in case others from class are reading this I will admit, I have been... well.... a little, let's say stubborn in this area BUT today I made a vow to do better. I tried to use the excuse that I am already doing the "Battlefield of the mind" study in our small group and that I was reading my Bible daily (most of the time, I got stubborn there for a week recently as well) and that I just didn't have time for yet another lesson.


Well, that ole friend "conviction" made a visit today so here I am! I read the chapter for this week and was filled with hope to say the least. It has been a rough time around here with Ed's work being very slow and not knowing how we were going to pay our bills at times, so I got a little hopeless. However, this made me feel a lot better. . . .


"For many people, life is-well, life is a jungle. Not a jungle of trees and beasts. Would that it were so simple. Would that our jungles could be cut with a machete or our adversaries trapped in a cage. But our jungles are comprised of the thicker thickets of failing health, broken hearts, and empty wallets. Our forests are framed with hospital walls and divorce courts. We don't hear the screeching of birds or the roaring of lions, but we do hear the complaints of neighbors and the demands of bosses. Our predators are our creditors, and the brush that surrounds us is the rush that exhausts us. And for some, even many, hope is in short supply. Hopelessness is an odd bag. Unlike the others, it isn't full. It is empty, and its emptiness creates burden. Unzip the top and examine the pockets. Turn it upside down and shake it hard. The bag of hopelessness is painfully empty."


He went on to say that we need 3 things that would help.

1. A person - not just any person. You don't need someone equally confused. you need someone who knows the way out.

2. Vision - you need someone to lift your spirits, someone to look you in the face and say "This isn't the end. Don't give up. There is a better place and I'll lead you there."

3. Direction - if you only have a person with renewed vision, all you have is company. If he has a vision but no direction, you have a dreamer for company. But if you have a person with direction-who can take you from this place to the right place-ah, you have the one who can restore hope. OR to use David's words, "He restores my soul."

"Our shepherd majors in restoring hope to the soul. Whether you are a lamb lost on a craggy ledge or a city slicker alone in a deep jungle, everything changes when your rescuer appears. Your loneliness diminishes because you have fellowship. Your despair decreases, because you have vision. Your confusion begins to lift, because you have direction. Note you haven't left the jungle, it is still a jungle, it hasn't changed but you have"


Hope comes when you have someone who can lead you out of the jungle. Hope comes when you turn to the one who made the jungle you are in. Hope comes with you put all your trust in the one who can to rescue you.


Who are YOU putting your trust in?!?!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Timeout

In the game of basketball you have a coach, players, referees, fans etc... The coach's job is to lead the team, instruct them on the plays. Offense, is to score the points to get the lead, defense if to make sure the other team doesn't score. They get 5 timeouts a game. 3 full timeouts, or a minute, & 2 30 second ones. The purpose of the timeouts is to regroup the team & make a plan to execute in order to succeed.


Basketball is a lot like life. It's fast paced, stressful at times, rewarding at times & a lot of work to get right. As in the game of basketball, life also has those same characteristics. Although I don't think we value the "timeouts" near like we should.


How often do you stop & have a "timeout" with God? How often do you let God be your "coach" & guide your lives daily??

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

This started it all....

Psalm 27:1 (New International Version)

Of David

1 The LORD is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?



God lead me to this verse yesterday. As soon as I read it I was burdened, I am sure you are asking why this verse would cause anyone to be burdened. God laid on my heart some situations that have been happening lately. He also told me it was time to do something about it. I was SO scared to act on what he was telling me to do. I took some time and prayed about it, I asked for confirmation. (I have been known to asked for a flashing billboard) however, I haven't gotten my confirmation in that form as of yet!!!



My confirmation came in the form of the person I wanted to talk to. So I called the Ya Ya's and we pounced!! We are a bunch of strong willed women and when we get a plan look out!!!



God led yesterday in a HUGH way through so many people. When we get out of His word, get too busy, or put it off we begin to let doubts fill our minds. We let the ole scum dog get a hold of us and control us in ways we do not see. I have been guilty of this lately. It is so easy to let it happen.



We have to DAILY strive to lead our lives to please God. It isn't an easy task but it is essential to our living fully in Christ!




Thursday, February 25, 2010

Interrupted

I read a blog this morning that talked about being interrupted. Most of the time we think of being interrupted as a bad thing but not in this case.


How often do thoughts, bad thoughts run through your head?

How often, as the blog I read today said, do you "cuss" in your mind?

How often do you get caught up in that tidbit of gossip??

How often often does that "bad driver" make you call them names you wouldn't if others were around??


Man, this really hit home for me. I'll be honest here, often times I get frustrated when driving at others & what do I do?? I say outloud (while alone in the car) "you idiot" or "moron".


The blog I read talked about asking to be "interrupted" when the things asked above happen. Interrupt my thoughts, my words, my actions.


I want to see people through God's eyes. To realize that no matter who they are, that they are a child of God & he loves them right where they are.


But honestly, that's hard. But then again, being a Christian & trying to DAILY walk in it is hard. It's a constant work in progress. That all too often I don't take seriously enough.


Lord, interrupt me. My thoughts, my words, my actions. Make me be more like you, Lord!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Unredeemed

Found this new song by Selah called "Unredeemed". Selah speaks to my heart in about every one of their songs. I can't seem to get the video to load just yet but maybe later, here are the lyrics for now.


The cruelest world
The coldest heart
The deepest wound
The endless dark
The lonely ache
The burning tears
The bitter nights
The wasted years

Life breaks and falls apart
But we know these are
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

For every choice that led to shame
And all the love that never came
For every vow that someone broke
And every lie that gave up hope
We live in the shadow of the fall
But the cross says these are all
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But you never know the miracle the father has in store
Just watch and see
It will not be
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

The cruelest world
The coldest heart
The deepest wound
The endless dark
The lonely ache
The burning tears
The bitter nights
The wasted years

Life breaks and falls apart
But we know these are
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

For every choice that led to shame
And all the love that never came
For every vow that someone broke
And every lie that gave up hope
We live in the shadow of the fall
But the cross says these are all
Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But when anything that's shattered is laid before the lord
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

Places where grace is soon to be so amazing
It may be unfulfilled
It may be unrestored
But you never know the miracle the father has in store
Just watch and see
It will not be
Just watch and see
It will not be unredeemed

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I am the mom!

Got this from Lysa TerKeurst today.. Loved it!!

I am the MOM

So.

Yeah.

Today's post isn't for my mommy friends who don't struggle. I love you. I applaud you. I heart you mucho. But I can't join your club.

I wish I could.


But my reality disqualifies me. I find being a mommy the most stretching thing I've ever done. I carry with me evidence of this stretching. Marks on my body. Marks on my heart. It's thrilling. Heartbreaking. Sweet. Exciting. Disillusioning. And incredibly unpredictable.


Just when I think I've figured a few things out and I'm about to shine my mommy halo, something happens. Something loud and tearful and frustratingly difficult. And I find myself knee deep in drama wondering if I will survive this season of 4 teens and one pre-teen.


It makes me laugh when I think back to being pregnant with my first child nearly seventeen years ago. I was convinced I would die in the child birthing process.


I even set up a special meeting with my doctor to go over exactly what happens in the birthing process and tearfully gave him all the reasons I was convinced I would not survive this process.


What in the world?


I so wish I could go stand in front of my little, um huge, pregnant self and say this:


"Honey, you will not perish giving birth. This part of motherhood will seem like a walk in the park in just a few years. You will not only survive giving birth but you are about to spend the next twenty years having your tiny little brain and your tiny little heart experience more highs and lows than you can shake a stick at.


Just remember one thing... You are the Mom. That's right you da' mama. Repeat after me... I am the Mama. I am the Mama. I am the Mama! Don't ever forget that.


"Yes, I would tell my little huge pregnant self that because it's easy to forget sometimes who's really in charge. My kids want to be in charge. And while they certainly have the strong wills and wonders of leadership... it's immature leadership. Leadership that needs to be shaped and molded and corrected and reigned in.


1 Corinthians 4:20 says, "For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power."


This reminds me I am not left to my own pitiful attempts at this daunting task but because of Jesus I have power. Real power. Not just theories and words given by human parenting experts whose advice may or may not work. I have power to rise up be da' mama.


The mom my strong willed, delightful, amazingly capable, beautifully adventurous, wildly wonderful, and uniquely special kids need. I have been perfectly designed, shaped, molded and assigned these children because I have what it takes to be their mom.

I have what it takes to be the mom!

You have what it takes to be the mom!

Now, be the mom!


Not sure who else needed this little pep rally this morning. But I sure did. Now I must go seek out the mouse that has been rattling my trash and taunting me the whole time I was writing this post. Poor little mouse who thought I'd be all screams and squeals and just let him pick through my trash.


He's about to face an empowered me. I AM THE MOM!

Love that.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Have you missed me???


I'd say not but then again you never know!


I haven't blogged lately, I was doing so good but then it got to be a point where I felt like I was just rambling on and on and on for no reason. So, here I am again!


As I look outside I see winter settling in. The cold, frigid temperatures, the snow covering everything. Just when we think it is about over or the worst of it anyway, it starts up again.


This makes me think of the winter of our lives. I see so many people hurting right now. Winter has settled in and doesn't look like it will let up anytime soon. In those times in life, we have a choice to make. Yes, it is easy for me to say because I am not in that place right now but we have to remember that God knows our struggles, he knows our fears. Most of all he wants us to come to Him with them, share our load with Him. He will take the burden from us if only we let Him. I read a book once called "On hinds' feet" and in it the author said that it's in the valleys that we grow the most, but we must remember the ultimate goal is to reach the top of the mountain.



Matthew 11:28 Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Senior Night






Senior night came and went.... and just that fast too! It was a bittersweet night, with Aimee having been out most of the season with her injury and surgery the season has been somewhat different for us. However, coach dressed her and started her, then pulled her out after about 3 seconds. She was very emotional, which is to be expected! Just seems as if this year is flying by too fast and my girl will be away at college in no time!!!


Here are a few pictures from the night! Love the one with Cole, he is a whole head taller than her now!!
















Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Crazy...

It seems that everyday lately is "just another manic Monday". There has been so much to keep us busy between ballgames, scholorships, school work, & church. To be honest we've let all the "busy" invade & I hate it when that happens.


It's so easy to get busy & let it take charge of our lives. I think.... NO, I know that's a ploy of the ole scum to keep our minds off of God & boy is he good at it. I don't know about you, but I can let things rule my life mainly because of my OCD, it has to be done a certain way.. my way & trust me that's not always a good thing, just ask Ed!!


The verse that I found to send out for my "text message ministry" today is: Proverbs 21:23 Watch your tongue and keep your mouth shut, and you will stay out of trouble. I laughed when I saw this verse because all too often I let my mouth overload my brain. Thankfully, most peopke know me & tend to ignore me when I "spew". However, that isn't an excuse for the behavior. I'm working on it!


I told Ed yesterday that when I feel my kids are being wronged, look out because I turn into this 3 headed monster that will spew fire at anyone or anything in my path. It's not a pretty sight... & often I just hang my head after I morph back into myself. As I said, working on it!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Fight or Flight

Most people that know my know that Moses is ont of my favorite people in the Bible. As I was reading in Exodus today I got tickled at the way I am so much like him.

Moses: God spoke to him through a burning bush, turned his staff into a snake, made his hand leprous then healed it, turned the Nile water into blood.

Now, I don't know about you but I have been known to pray for God to show me answers in flashing neon billboards. Now, that hasn't happened yet but there has been tuggings, yearnings that have been strong & what do I do? I turn into Moses & run or say "Who am I? I can't speak well enough". But in that off chance that I do follow what I'm being led, it usually turns out to be a big blessing at a little inconvience to myself.

Are you a Moses??

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

My dear friend Susan sent me a link to a blog that was right on. I wanted to share the post with you from Lysa TerKeurst. By the way, I am also a "fried okra mamma"!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Three things every mom should know

I think one of the hardest things about motherhood for me is my tendency to blame myself for the wrong choices my kids sometimes make. The second hardest thing is trying to figure out how to fix their issues.Being a mom is tough. Especially when you are hyper aware the situation your child is in will carry with it great consequences. Never is there a deeper sorrow then that of a mother who feels helpless.So, that's what I'm addressing today based on a comment Marilyn sent in yesterday.

I take great comfort in knowing the advice I'm offering isn't my own. It's straight from God's truth. After all, He knows what it's like to deal with wayward children. He feels our pain. He knows our sorrow.

Marilyn wrote:I need prayers for me and my daughter. Found out Friday she is doing things with her boyfriend I do not approve of. We had a talk and she told me my values are not hers. She has not had an encounter with God like I have. She still feels like she is a good person, whatever that means. I weep for her soul and pray for God to touch her and draw her back to Him. I pray that I am able to let her go into His hands. She is 19 and off at college, old enough to make her own decisions and to deal with the consequences, but I still want to fly out and rescue her from bad decisions. Nobody told me being a parent was so hard!


Oh sweet sister. Boy, do I feel your pain. I too would want to fly out and rescue my daughter. But I'm afraid I'd also want to threaten that boy with what the mama in "Blind Side" said she'd do to her son if he did inappropriate things with a girl.I'm not saying I would actually do what she suggested.I'm just saying I would want to.

Because honest is the way I roll y'all. And Southern women can be as sweet as our tea until you mess with one of our kids. Then we become more like fried okra. Hot. Tough on the outside. All squishy and messy on the inside.

So.I have to set my fried okra response aside and ask what a Jesus girl should do in a situation like this.

Ephesians 6: 10-12 says, "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."

Based on this truth, here are three things us mamas should know:

1. God doesn't call us to find a power within ourselves to face the issues we'll face with our kids.

He calls us to put on His armor because what we are facing is a battle. A battle of epic proportions. His weapons aren't silly little spiritual suggestions that might or might not work. His weapons are certain. His belt of truth. I must park my run away mind in the assurance of God's love for me and my child.His breastplate of right choices. I must stop reacting in the flesh and choose to battle this with my praises and prayers.His gospel of peace. I must walk in the assurance and peace that even when I can't see things changing, God is working on my child's behalf.His shield of faith. I must have faith in God's timing and in His ways.His helmet of Salvation. I must trust God's ultimate desire for my child is for her to have a close relationship with Him. Though this seems like an unlikely part of this process, God will bring good out of even this.His sword which is the Bible. I must read God's love letter to me every day. And hold those truth as the life line between God's security and my shaky heart.And His gift of prayer. I must see prayer not as a last resort but as the very thing God's most courageous followers turn to first.Ephesians 6: 13-18 assures us with these in place, we will be able to stand. These things will help us tap into a power beyond ourselves.

2. The battle isn't against our child and their choices.

It feels like the battle is against our child. Boy does it ever! But, in reality, the battle is against Satan's schemes. There will be some battles we face with our kids that will be impossible to win in the flesh. I suspect in this situation, the more this mom tries to fight against her daughter's choices, the more it will drive this daughter into the arms of her boyfriend. There is something terribly appealing when young lovers feel like they are renegading against the world together. Satan twists truth. He hides consequences. He blinds reality. He has schemes perfectly designed with our weaknesses in mind. Therefore, we have to battle Satan. He's the real enemy here. And because we are Jesus girls, we hold the power for victory in our prayers and praises to God.

3. The battle is taking place in the heavenly realms.

Oh how my fried okra self wants to fight this battle with what I can see. Remember... I would want to do unspeakables to unmentionables. Ahem. But that would fix nothing except land me in jail. So, I must fight this battle with the only thing I have that can reach into the heavenly realm. My praises and prayers. Praises for who God is and prayers for Him to remove Satan's influence in this situation. If ever I'm tempted to doubt how powerful praises and prayers are in battle a quick read of 2 Chronicles 20: 1-24 soothes this mama for sure.I so relate to the feelings expressed in 2 Chronicles 20:12, "For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon you."And I so want the victory seen in 2 Chronicles 20: 22, "As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against (their enemies), and they were defeated." Verse 27 goes on to say, "...all the men of Judah (and fried okra mamas) returned joyfully to Jerusalem, for the Lord has given them great cause to rejoice over their enemies."The thing that bridges the gap between feeling powerless like verse 12 and the victory in verse 27 is our praises and prayers. I can't fully explain it. But I can proclaim it. Our prayers and our praises are powerful and effective. Yes, being a mom is really tough. But we can take great comfort in knowing we aren't alone. Like I said, one of the biggest things we have in common with God is the struggle of dealing with wayward children.Since God, the perfect parent, has dealt with this since the beginning of time- I think His is the best advice around.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Living Room:
When Your Heart Needs a Father
by Max Lucado


"Our Father who is in heaven …” With these words Jesus escorts us into the Great House of God. Shall we follow him? There is so much to see. Every room reveals his heart, every stop will soothe your soul. And no room is as essential as this one we enter first. Walk behind him as he leads us into God’s living room.

Sit in the chair that was made for you and warm your hands by the fire which never fades. Take time to look at the framed photos and find yours. Be sure to pick up the scrapbook and find the story of your life. But please, before any of that, stand at the mantle and study the painting which hangs above it.

Your Father treasures the portrait. He has hung it where all can see.

Stand before it a thousand times and each gaze is as fresh as the first. Let a million look at the canvas and each one will see himself. And each will be right.

Captured in the portrait is a tender scene of a father and a son. Behind them is a great house on a hill. Beneath their feet is a narrow path. Down from the house the father has run. Up the trail the son has trudged. The two have met, here, at the gate.

We can’t see the face of the son; it’s buried in the chest of his father. No, we can’t see his face, but we can see his tattered robe and stringy hair. We can see the mud on the back of his legs, the filth on his shoulders and the empty purse on the ground. At one time the purse was full of money. At one time the boy was full of pride. But that was a dozen taverns ago. Now both the purse and the pride are depleted. The prodigal offers no gift or explanation. All he offers is the smell of pigs and a rehearsed apology: “Father, I have sinned against God and done wrong to you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son” (Luke 15:21).

He feels unworthy of his birthright. “Demote me. Punish me. Take my name off the mailbox and my initials off the family tree. I am willing to give up my place at your table.” The boy is content to be a hired hand. There is only one problem. Though the boy is willing to stop being a son, the father is not willing to stop being a father.

Though we can’t see the boy’s face in the painting, we can’t miss the father’s. Look at the tears glistening on the leathered cheeks, the smile shining through the silver beard. One arm holds the boy up so he won’t fall, the other holds the boy close so he won’t doubt.

“Hurry!” he shouts. “Bring the best clothes and put them on him. Also, put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. And get our fat calf and kill it so we can have a feast and celebrate. My son was dead, but now he is alive again! He was lost but now he is found!” (Luke 15:22–24).

How these words must have stunned the young man, “My son was dead …” He thought he’d lost his place in the home. After all, didn’t he abandon his father? Didn’t he waste his inheritance? The boy assumed he had forfeited his privilege to sonship. The father, however, doesn’t give up that easily. In his mind, his son is still a son. The child may have been out of the house, but he was never out of his father’s heart. He may have left the table, but he never left the family. Don’t miss the message here. You may be willing to stop being God’s child. But God is not willing to stop being your Father.

From The Great House of God
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 1997) Max Lucado

A bunch of Nimrod's

Have you ever called anyone a "Nimrod"?


I'm not sure if I have but I've heard the term used enough to know it's not a positive thing to be called a nimrod!


But, did you know there actually was a man named Nimrod in the bible? Yep, I was reading in Genesis chapter 10 & came across him. He was acrually a mighty hunter but as it said in the commentary peopke with great gifts can become proud, & that is probably what happened to him. Some consider him to be the founder of the great, godless Babylonian empire.


Funny how when we let ourselves get caught up in what WE can do how easily we can forget to give God the credit.



Don't be a "Nimrod", remember the One who is almighty & mighty to save!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Love on the move

I heard a statement from the lead singer of Leeland that said "Love isn't love unless it is on the move". It hit deep for me, the Ya Ya's have been talking a lot about love lately while doing the "Crazy Love" study by Francis Chan.


Love isn't supposed to just sit idle, it would be easy if we as Christians were only called to stay in our own little groups or families and practice love. Ok, well maybe not so easy ALL THE TIME with your family, but you know what I mean. We are call to "Go". Jesus said in Matthew 28:19 "Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit."

He didn't say sit at home and stay all warm and cozy and think about reaching others for me. He said to "GO". The hard part is it gets us out of our comfort zones BUT Jesus didn't call us to be comfortable either. Think about all the uncomfortable situations he was faced with. He took the ultimate uncomfortable position and dies on the cross for all of us. That is what we need to be thinking about when we are feeling called to do something that might make us a little uneasy.

What would happen if we all viewed others as Christ views them??

Try it this week and see how your attitude changes.



Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Looking for the Messiah,
Part 2
by Max Lucado

Some missed him.

Some miss him still.

We expect God to speak through peace, but sometimes he speaks through pain.

We think God talks through the church, but he also talks through the lost.

We look for the answer among the Protestants, but he’s been known to speak through the Catholics.

We listen for him among the Catholics but find him among the Quakers.

We think we hear him in the sunrise, but he is also heard in the darkness.

We listen for him in triumph, but he speaks even more distinctly through tragedy.

We must let God define himself.

When we do, when we let God define himself, a whole new world opens before us. How, you ask? Let me explain with a story.

Once there was a man whose life was one of misery. The days were cloudy, and the nights were long. Henry didn’t want to be unhappy, but he was. With the passing of the years, his life had changed. His children were grown. The neighborhood was different. The city seemed harsher.

He was unhappy. He decided to ask his minister what was wrong.

“Am I unhappy for some sin I have committed?”

“Yes,” the wise pastor replied. “You have sinned.”

“And what might that sin be?”

“Ignorance,” came the reply. “The sin of ignorance. One of your neighbors is the Messiah in disguise, and you have not seen him.”

The old man left the office stunned. “The Messiah is one of my neighbors?” He began to think who it might be.

Tom the butcher? No, he’s too lazy. Mary, my cousin down the street? No, too much pride. Aaron the paperboy? No, too indulgent. The man was confounded. Every person he knew had defects. But one was the Messiah. He began to look for Him.

He began to notice things he hadn’t seen. The grocer often carried sacks to the cars of older ladies. Maybe he is the Messiah. The officer at the corner always had a smile for the kids. Could it be? And the young couple who’d moved next door. How kind they are to their cat. Maybe one of them …

With time he saw things in people he’d never seen. And with time his outlook began to change. The bounce returned to his step. His eyes took on a friendly sparkle. When others spoke he listened. After all, he might be listening to the Messiah. When anyone asked for help, he responded; after all this might be the Messiah needing assistance.

The change of attitude was so significant that someone asked him why he was so happy. “I don’t know,” he answered. “All I know is that things changed when I started looking for God.”

Now, that’s curious. The old man saw Jesus because he didn’t know what he looked like. The people in Jesus’ day missed him because they thought they did.

How are things looking in your neighborhood?

From A Gentle Thunder
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 1987) Max Lucado

Sunday, January 3, 2010

2009

As I looked back on 2009 I basically thought it sucked. Then, I realized that I was letting December overshawdow my whole year.


December was probably the worst month I can remember having in many years. It threatned to get me down. So, I was ready for it to be over.

Today as I sat in church I got to thinking about some things Pastor Jeanne was talking about & I realized that this year was a pretty good year for my family. Yes, we had some rough times but for the most part it was a good year. We, as a family, made some decisions for Christ & I believe the ole scum dog really went to work to try to destroy the work in us. To be honest with you, we almost let him.


So, as we start this new year. 2010 will be another great year & my hope & prayer is that we continue to lean on God's promises & His plan for our futures.


Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you & not to harm, plans for a hope & a future.