Monday, February 28, 2011

Day 50 - Great Questions

We're #1!
Be all that you can be.
You're Tops!
Super Star!
Reach for the stars.

I think all of our lives we are encouraged (maybe pushed) to succeed.  I see it in children's eyes everyday, the joy of an A+ and the disappointment in anything but.  This past summer when I coached Carson's soccer team, I was pumping up the kids, saying words of encouragement, picking out things they had done well, when one of the dad's came over and said, "Come on guys! You gotta get out there and score. We want to win!"  I quickly chimed in, "We want to have fun and do our best." 

I'm sorry, but we aren't always going to be winners. Sometimes we lose and that is ok.  When Colin is disappointed over a loss, I ask, "Did you have fun? Did you try your best?"  If his answers are yes, then I remind him that is all that matters.

Now, I'll admit, I'm a very competitive person.  I love the excitement of a good ball game, but I do know that winning isn't everything. 

It is SO VERY important that we experience defeat.

Yes, let me say it again.


And yes, even my children must.

How else can we reap in the joy of the rewards of success? How else can we find out what we are made of and what we are about?

Defeat is so humbling.  We must look at ourselves to find what caused the defeat. Was it something we did? Were we just outplayed?  Oh, I remember Colin's last baseball game in June.  The kids played their hearts out. They made mistakes that 6-8 year olds would make, but man, they gave it their all. They lost.  Nobody's fault.  They just lost.  But they knew they did their best.  In defeat, they found joy in knowing they played their hearts out.  They knew that we were just as proud of them with that loss as we would have been if they had won.

Now I realize that my comments are all sports related and kid related, but hey, that is my life right now.  I'll tell you that one thing that I have enjoyed about Upward basketball this year is that when the game is over, it doesn't matter who the winner and losers are.  The kids are still encouraged and loved.  During one of the halftime devotions, one of the coaches spoke. He is also a high school coach.  He said, "Parents, the most important conversation you have with your child is after the game."  Isn't that so true?  Should we treat them any different if they win or lose?  No, we shouldn't carry them out on our shoulders if the team wins and we shouldn't walk away from them in shame if they lose. 

I think the best thing we can do for our children is to encourage them all the time.  Lift them up when they fall. Celebrate with them always.  The way we teach them to handle defeat will impact them all their lives.

I'm not trying to be cold hearted, but our children need to learn that they are not the best at everything, they can't have everything, and we owe them nothing but love and care. The world does not revolve around them.  We have to show them that we believe the same things about ourselves.  They will watch and learn from how we react to defeat and disappointment. Do we point fingers and find some one to blame? Or do we accept that failure is a necessary part of life?

True that we will see different types of defeat. We will be hurt, let down, and disappointed by others. We will make mistakes that will cause us to stumble and fall. Regardless, we must humble ourselves, pick ourselves up, and ask God to guide us, show us the way he would have us go, put us in HIS will.  He will be with us on the mountaintop. He will be with us in the valley.  He show us light in the darkness.  He knows that we are not perfect. He doesn't expect us to be.  I think God does expect us to try to do well in the fact that we are doing what is in his will. 

We will find success, we will be winners if we are in God's will.  It won't always be easy. He never promised it would be, only that he would be with us.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Some Sunday Thoughts and Some Catching Up

So, my dear sweet friend Glenda had asked me last week to teach Sunday school for her today.  I agreed. Then she emailed me and said she needed me next week instead, and would I still do both weeks. At first I said, "No."  Yes, I was being selfish. There I admit it.  God shook is head in disbelief, I was guilt ridden, and agreed to both weeks.  I emailed some friends hoping they would come.

So, this morning I get up.  My dear sweet husband informs me that I have bags under my eyes. Thank you, Honey.  Nothing fit. Fat rolls were hanging out everywhere.  My dear sweet husband ironed some different clothes for me.  I didn't wear them. Sorry, Honey.  I wore a pair of black maternity pants (no I'm not pregnant). Yes they were comfortable.

Needless to say, I am going to start working on getting in shape again.


As I was stomping through the house, through ill fitting clothing around, I seriously considered not going to church. I'll call Glenda and tell her I don't feel well. But that would be a lie and she is the preacher's wife. She's in cahoots with God, you know.

I was so not wanting to go.  Satan was not wanting me to go. He was trying everything to get me to stay home.  You see, what I didn't know was that not only was I going to be teaching my class, but Newman's class was going to be joining us.  Leslie's husband is such a neat man.  He is full of wisdom (really wished he would have been with us at Toys R Us one night when we were approached by some folks of a different religion).  I felt unworthy teaching his students.  After all, I teach 8 year olds and young adults who don't know whether they are coming or going most days, not those who are used to being filled with wisdom. I'm a rambler. I break out in hives. Oh dear.

I went. I taught. I learned.

I thank Glenda so much for the opportunity she gave me.  I thank those that came, listened, learned (hopefully), and offered words of encouragement.  I will do it again next week.

I think I've almost missed my point.....You see, Satan attacked my self image this morning, the bags, the clothes, the fat rolls, it was all a ploy. He wanted me to stay away from my Father's business today. He knew that I had the opportunity to bless someone and to be blessed myself.  I'm so glad he didn't win.  I think we need to be on the look out for things like that.  Satan will use our weakness to get us off track and out of God's will.  We have to stop him. I stopped him by surrounding myself with wonderful Christian friends this morning.  What a blessing they were to me!  It was a great opportunity to be with folks that I normally don't get to be with.

Last night was the Upward celebration at FBC in Portland. I have to say that we have enjoyed Colin's participation so much in this program. He has grown leaps and bounds.  His confidence. His skills.  What a  cool experience.  Anyway, last night we got to watch Gutsy the Flying Fox.  Well, one thing that stuck out was this statement, "We are in a battle for the souls of our children."  WOW. AMEN.  YES WE ARE.  Our children are pulled in every direction. They are influenced by us, their peers, their teachers, their coaches, TV, Internet, books.  However, as their parents, we are ultimately responsible for them.  It is up to us to "train them up in the way they should go."  It is up to teach them about God, then to show them by standing by what we teach.  We must fight for our children.  We owe it to them. 

Speaking of my children....I am a proud mama.

Colin continues to amaze me.  This morning, he closed my SS class in prayer.  He is doing well at school and is in the gifted program for 3rd graders.

Carson is turning five in April.  WOW.  He is coming out of TBall retirement this year.  He has agreed to play, but only if we were his coaches.  So, guess what I'll be doing this spring.

Baseball, baseball, and more baseball.

Jeffrey is coaching Colin's Pee Wee team again, and we will both be coaching Carson's TBall team.  Can't quit now! 

Carter is growing up.  I can't stand it.  My baby will be a year old in 13 days.   sniff, sniff    Oh, and can you believe he is.......


Yes, my baby has been walking for weeks now.  And yesterday, Carter got his first haircut.  sniff, sniff   He looks like a little boy now, not a baby. LOTS of pictures to come of that.

When I won my first blogger award, I was asked some questions about my pets and I realize that I have failed to answer.  We have a dog and a cat.  Yes, I know that sounds pretty normal, but our dog's name is Big Dog.  Yes, he is a big dog.  Wasn't supposed to be.  He is also nocturnal.  Yes, he rests all day and parties all night. As for our cat, his name is Happy.  Aren't animal names so cute when you let 2 year olds name them?!?!?!?  The cat eats power cords.  I'm waiting for the day when he electrocutes himself like the cat on Christmas Vacation.  He also eats sticky hands and rubber bracelets. He waits to attack.  Loves biting my legs.  He also eats until he pukes.  Gross, I know.  Try stepping in it in the middle of the night.

 Have a wonderful rest of your Sunday.  We are off to church in a bit. Then time to get ready for another week of teaching fourth graders!

Day 49 - If I Can?

I like to consider myself a strong, independent woman.  I used to take pride in that.  I didn't need to depend on anyone.

However, just like I told my Sunday school class this morning, God has a way of tearing those walls down and showing us that we are nothing without Him.

I can't do anything.

God can do everything.

He doesn't need me, but He wants me.

I do need Him.  I want Him.

I've been talking a lot lately about my faith in Him, believing that He will keep his promises and take care of me. That I can trust him and depend on him.  After all, he is my friend, my Father, my Savior.

I've learned though, that talking means nothing.  Its all about actions. 

I have to prove through my actions, my daily walk what I am about. And what is that exactly? I am about my Father's business.  My faith tells me that He is wonderful, holy, mighty.  There is nothing that will stop him from fullfilling his promises to us.  My faith tells me that I can bring anything to him and he will do what is best for me.

As I exercise my faith, I must fully trust Him.  If things don't seem to be working out, I need to realize that it isn't Him, it is my faith, or lack of.  Am I making God too small?  I shouldn't. There is nothing he can't handle. 

I need to always remember:


Day 48 - We Tried, But We Couldn't

As a sports mom, I have been around enough kids to know when their hearts just weren't in the game.  Sometimes the only reason why the kids are on a team is because their parents want them to be.  The kids couldn't care less. They have no interest in the sport and would "rather be fishing."   If the kids don't want to be there and have no interest, it doesn't matter what the coaches do, the kids are not going to perform.

Well, how does this relate to today's study?

Well, I just think that if our hearts aren't in to what God is leading us to, then we won't perform.

The disciples had been given the power and authority, but where they relying on God for the power or themselves? 

I simply don't know.

All I can do is look at myself.  If I haven't opened my heart to Him, laid it all out on the line for Him, and taken an honest look at my motives, then I am not going to perform for my Lord.  However, if I am in His will, if I admit that I am weak (nothing without him), and my strength comes from Him, then He is able to do mighty things through me.

Does He need me to do those things?

No, but He does need me to be open, honest, and willing. 

For me, I think I am taking this thought away from the today's scripture:

If I humble myself and put myself in His will, then God can use me for great things.  However, if I depend on myself and try to pull from my own strength, then I can do nothing.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 47 - Out of MY Element

Back in high school, I had a friend that had been a good friend to me since 1st grade.  During our sophomore year, I found out through a mutual friend that Amy had asked her Sunday School class to pray for me.

I was furious.  I thought that I didn't need anyone one to pray for me, that I was fine the way I was. There was nothing wrong with me.

Fast forward several years.

I met with the preacher of Calvary Baptist Church about the baby dedication.  He asked me if I had opened my heart to Jesus.  Here I was confronted with the prior issue: was I really fine the way I was?  No.  God had placed me in a situation where I was uncomfortable and I learned quickly that I was wrong. I needed Him.

Since surrendering my life to him, He has placed me in situations where I have been out of my element LOTS of times. 

I love to teach....


I could be a complete goof myself in front of them. 

Imagine how I felt when I was asked to substitute teach for our Sunday school class...Parents. Adults. People like me.  I knew very little of the Bible, only enough to know a few of the most popular verses.  Oh, teaching adults is SO out of my element.  My neck gets all red and blotchy.  I get scattered brained (more than normal). I ramble.  I'm extra critical of myself.

Guess what I have volunteered to do the next two Sundays.....

Teach my Sunday school class.

Why would I torture myself?

It isn't torture.  I learn so much.  Sometimes we are content to sit and soak while others are teaching. But when I have to teach, I really dig into the scripture and allow God to talk to me.  I research.  I look for cool ways to present the scripture and what I want my class to learn and come away with.  I treat them like my kids at school.

Being in groups is also out of my element. I'm more of a 1 on 1 person.  I don't like to have lots of attention or have to call attention to myself.  I was so nervous at my first Bible study.  I was surrounded by these women that I felt were so above me. They were, in my opinion, strong Christian women. I was a new Christian. Yet, through this experience, I learned so much about me, them, Him.  I made friendships, gained confidence, and became closer to God.  Since, I have led a Bible study in my home, organized ladies outings for church (haven't done that in a while, need to soon!), and started this study with a fine group of women.

There are countless other times I have obeyed God and left my comfort zone.

I am so thankful for those moments.

If we remain content with "just being," we miss so much.

However, if we allow Him to move us, guide us, walk with us, we can do so much.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Day 46 - Assurance of Mystery

I have to admit that I asked God several times to help me understand today's study. I won't read ahead because I don't want to be influenced by anyone except him.

Well, I don't know if it was fatigue or the severe weather, but I just couldn't comprehend.

So I read what Beth had to say.

I totally got it then. I could relate to her story about her husband. I could see how the assurance and mystery of our marriage related to my relationship with Jesus.

While here on earth, I'll never fully understand his ways. I am not meant to. He will however reveal to me what he wants me to know. Each day I am in awe of my Jesus. I learn more about him and love him more each day.

Yet, there will always be things that don't make sense to me or that he is not ready to reveal. I do have the assurance that he is in control and has a plan to make me prosper and not cause me harm. I have the assurance that he loves me. I have the assurance of salvation.

My faith in Jesus is the rock of my assurance.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


I am half way through my 90Days With Jesus study.

Truly awesome!

I am learning so much.

About Him. About me.

It is so exciting to meet Jesus daily. It hasn't been easy. But I am committed to Him. I've had sick kids, gotten behind in housework, and lost some sleep. Life as normal. I am making Him my priority, though, which was one of my goals when starting the study. I am working to create healthy Christian habits.

God has certainly been talking to me through this study. I am learning not only to listen, but to also obey, denying myself. I've been trying to be more like Jesus by showing patience, being understanding and patient, and loving those I encounter. It isn't always easy, but it is well worth it, living in obedience.

I am looking forward to what the remainder of this journey holds. I'll continue to pray for an open heart and allow Him to not only speak to me, but change me as well.

Day 45 - Who is this man?

On Sunday, we discussed having a fear of God and what that meant. Luke 9:28-36 reminds me of having that fear of Him.

It isn't that we are scared to death of God.

It is that we see Him for WHO he really is.

He is powerful.
He is love.
He is all knowing.
He is everywhere.
He is majestic.
He is holy.
He is friend.
He is healer.
He is father.
He is Savior.

Once we are able to see him for who he is, we respect him. We give the honor and glory to him that he deserves. We know that he knows our hearts.

God is so much bigger than we give Him credit for. Like Beth said, He will reveal himself to us in wonderful ways we we truly open up and make ourselves willing to really see Him.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

All That I Can Say

I do love this song. I think we all feel this way sometimes. It is important that when we do, we admit to God that we are giving him all that we have.

Day 44 - Daily Denial

Isn't it easy to get into a rut?

Isn't it easy to push things to the side and say, "I'll do that later."

Isn't it easy to form new bad habits.

Our lives can change in the blink of an eye.  We can make a decision that could turn our lives upside down or put us on the straight and narrow. 

I simply love that Beth Moore said that we should surrender daily. I picture getting up each morning and praying a prayer similar to Jabez's, Lord, I am yours.  Please guide my thoughts, my steps, my actions, and my words.  Please walk beside me, keep me from evil, so that I may not cause pain. Help me to put you and your will first. Help me to show love to all that I meet today.

Can I be honest here?

For whatever reason, I did not pray my Prayer of Jabez yesterday.  I had been doing so since I had posted it for you a while back.  I had noticed a change in my attitude. I had been so much more patient. My words a bit sweeter.  But yesterday, I did not prayer it.  By yesterday afternoon, I had become irratable. I wasn't as loving to my family as I should have been.  I didn't fully surrender to my Savior yesterday. 

So this morning, I am thankful that I am up way before the alarm, hours before the sunrise.  I am able to focus on Him.  Yes I am tired, but  I must deny myself.


I know I will stumble.

I know I will fall.

I know if I ask Him, Jesus will pick me back up.

If I deny myself daily for Him, I create new habits.  These habits become who I am.  They make me His.  If I deny myself daily for Him, my life will change. For the better. I will be more like Him.  If I deny myself daily for Him, I will be a better mom, wife, teacher, and friend.  Others will see Him in me.

Father, so many times, I have put myself before you.  I have thought I was too tired, too hungry, to sick to deny myself for you.  For being so selfish, Lord, I am truly sorry.  I love you. I want to please you in all I do.  I want to give myself to you wholy, truly, daily.  Please help me to surrender to you each day. Please help me to deny myself, my wants, my desires for you.  Please make me the woman you have planned.

Day 43 - Hot and Cold

We are mere humans.

We have a human mentality.

Our understanding can not hold the power of God's Word to the fullest.

Right now, Carson has a lot of questions about Jesus.  He is actually interested in learning His story.  A long time ago, Colin created a scene of 3 crosses on his closet door.  The crosses are created of masking tape and the scene consists of a large cross in the center and two smaller crosses on both sides.  Carson will say, "Mama, tell me about this." So I tell him the story in a way that his little 4 year old mind will hopefully understand:  Jesus is God's Son.  He was born and lived on earth so he could teach us about God and heaven.  Well, there were some people that didn't like what Jesus was teaching. They called him a liar, but Jesus never lied. He never did anything bad.  Well, these people that didn't like Jesus nailed him to this cross.  On the other two crosses were these guys that did bad things.  One of the men talked mean to Jesus and made fun of him.  The other guy told him to stop because he believed in Jesus. So Jesus told the bad guy who was being nice to him that he loved him and would see him in heaven.  The guy that was being mean to Jesus didn't get to go to heaven. He had to go to hell because he didn't believe in Jesus. If we believe in Jesus, we will go to heaven too.

Carson may not fully grasp the story for a while, but he is trying.  I remember that Colin has always been on fire or Jesus.  At two years old, he would sit in the front pew and listen intently at sermons.  Carson on the otherhand is just getting to where he wants to know more.  I asked Jeffrey Sunday how much he thinks Carson actually "hears" in church. 

I want my children to understand as much as their little minds can.  We all need to know that Jesus HAD to do what He did.  If he hadn't, we would not have been made whole through him. 

I had never really thought that Peter was "acting as Satan."  I always took it as he didn't fully understand the will of God.

But it is a story, a lesson to be learned for us.

Because we simply cannot fully understand the will of God, we will stumble.  Satan does this and can turn our inability to understand into disbelief.  We must beware and spend time in God's presence so that we can be in His will and ask Him for wisdom.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Days 41 and 42

I haven't been lazy on my study this weekend, but I've been contemplating my words. 

Sometimes I don't have an immediate response to the study and I have to let it soak in, as the case for the last two days.

You see, I have been blessed.  I am blessed. I'm not being presumptuous saying that. I'm giving glory to God for all He has done in my life. 

I've been blessed.  Thank you God.

Beth Moore wanted to know first thing what is the big thing I'm facing right now.  That was hard for me.  I really don't see a big thing in my life.  Right now, I find myself in a season where God is walking beside me, building me up.  However, I do realize that at any time, He can place me in a season where my "only" is all that I have.  Where I have to rely on my faith in Him to get me through.

I talked with my dear friend Angie yesterday. I love talking with her. She is so wise and loving, encouraging, and fun.  We talked about how God will test us.  He will place people in our lives and place us in situations as a test. 

I don't want to fail those tests.

Right now, I'm a lot of talk.  I've seen how God has worked his miracles in the lives of others (on big things).  I've seen how He has worked his miracles in my own life.  Yet, I've been blessed and I don't have the experiences that so many others have in the "big things" of life.

Can I be honest here? Really honest?

I don't want to go through the big things of life.

I don't want to lose a child or my husband. I don't want to lose my job or home. I don't want us to lose our health.  I don't want my husband to ever be deployed. I don't want to go through those big things.

But if God chooses to place me in the middle of one of those big things, I want to make him proud. I want to give him praise and honor just as I do now.  I want my actions to support everything I've ever said about my faith in him.  I want to give him my all, even it if is my "only." I want him to be able to take that "only" and bless others though me. 

When I read my study for this weekend, I thought of the song All that I can Say by David Crowder.  If I can find a video of it, I'll post, but for now, here are the lyrics.  Read them and let them sink in. We need to remember that God wants our all, even if it isn't much.

Lord I'm tired
So tired from walking
And Lord I'm so alone
And Lord the dark
Is creeping in
Creeping up
To swallow me
I think I'll stop
Rest here a while

And this is all that I can say right now
And this is all that I can give
And this is all that I can say right now
And this is all that I can give, that's my everything

And didn't You see me cry'n?
And didn't You hear me call Your name?
Wasn't it You I gave my heart to?
I wish You'd remember
Where you sat it down

And this is all that I can say right now, i know its not much.
But this is all that I can give, yeah that's my everything.
This is all that I can say right now [right now], i know its not much.
But this is all that I can give, yeah that's my everything.

I didn't notice You were standing here
I didn't know that
That was You holding me
I didn't notice You were cry'n too
I didn't know that
That was You washing my feet

And this is all that I can say right now, oh i know its not much.
But this is all that I can give, yeah that's my everything.
This is all that I can say right now [right now], i know its not much.
But this is all that I can give, yeah that's my everything.

And this is all that I can say right now, oh i know its not much.
But this is all that I can give, yeah that's my everything.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Day 40 - You Want Us to do What?

Everything God has done for me, everything He has given me was for one reason...He loves me. 

I don't deserve the gifts and blessings bestowed upon me.  I don't deserve His love, grace, and mercy.

He chose to give them to me anyway.


How often do we do anything freely? Cheerfully? Without seeking anything in return?

How often do we put our own comforts aside and put others and their needs first?

I am ashamed that this past week, I have not been a cheerful giver.  I volunteered to do something for someone I love, but then complained about how long it took, how much money it cost, and the effort I had to put into it.  Looking back, I'm ashamed of myself. 

Others have done this same thing for me. Hopefully cheerfully and freely.  Why didn't I do the same? 

I can make excuses about the business of homelife and the business of working 3 10-12 hour days. 

But I won't.

God could easily make excuses on why He shouldn't do something for me.

I'm lazy.
I'm selfish.
I gossiped.
I'm a glutton.
I put my sleep before Him.
I said a bad word.
I told a white lie.

But no.

He gives freely.

I thank Him for this look at myself, my behavior and attitude this week.  I pray that when He presents a task in which I can be a blessing to someone, that I would choose to do it freely and cheerfully.  I pray that I would be more open to what He calls me to do, to put my own fears and comforts to the side in order to serve Him and bring Him honor and glory.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.”
1 Corinthians 12:4

I L.O.V.E. to sing. However, God did not bless me with that gift. I admit I even became jealous of Hilarie during church one Sunday she sat nearby and I heard her beautiful voice! It just wasn’t fair!!

I was not blessed with the gift of “art.” I can barely draw stick people. My students always cracked up when I drew the life cycle of a frog for them. Not a pretty sight!

God has blessed with me the gift of teaching. I’ve used that gift to serve Him by becoming a school teacher, teaching our adult Sunday school class, the kindergarten class, and two different VBS classes. I love teaching. I learn so much!

God has also blessed me with the gift of planning. I’ve been able to help in organizing our annual block party at church. It is always such a great event (not because of me, but because of the fun the kids and families have).

I’d like to think that God has blessed me with the gift of writing and encouragement.

I have found that I can’t be like Hilarie. I can’t sing like Leslie. I can’t play instruments like Leslie. I can’t do a lot of things because God didn’t give me those gifts.

Using our gifts remind me of the Casting Crowns song If We are the Body. Think about. If we are blessed with these diverse gifts of the same Spirit, why is the world in the shape it is? Are all the teachers teaching? Are all the singers singing? Are all the preachers preaching? Are all the encouragers encouraging? Are will doing what God has called us to do?

If we ALL used our God given gifts for Him, we could change the world. We could serve Him in so many wonderful ways.

I thank God for the gifts He has given me and I pray that I will use them to serve and honor Him while being a blessing to others.

Day 38 - More Than Enough

On Sunday evening, we were at church when we had a black out. The lights flickered, then moaned and slowly darkened until finally there was darkness. The power was out. We saw. We heard it.

When I read Luke 8: 42b-48, this vision of that experience came to mind.

Jesus felt the power go from him, but the here’s the difference. His power was NOT out.

He knew what had happened and the woman would soon be found out. She was honest and admitted what she had done.

What had she done exactly?

She had faith that Jesus could heal her, so she touched the hem of his clothing.

What amazing faith!

But I do have to say that we continue to read these stories of faith and answered prayers, yet there are so many that don’t have their prayers answered, and God works in other ways.

That takes me back to what Beth Moore asked about the difference between those that suffer bitterly and those that suffer well.

Those that suffer bitterly are just that….bitter. They are angry, ugly, hateful. They don’t know and don’t care, they just want “it” fixed. NOW.

Those that suffer well….they are a blessing to be around. We have several church members that have battled cancer or still battle the disease. They continue to praise God in the midst of their pain. They are encouragers to others. They pray for others. They love with all their heart.

God isn’t always going to answer our prayers the way we want. If we want physical earthly healing, he may give us eternal healing by taking us home to heaven. That in itself is difficult for some to deal with. I remember following a little boy’s journey on CaringBridge. I didn’t know him or his family, but I prayed for him. His mother kept asking us to pray for his miracle. The boy passed away after battling cancer. Someone told his mom that maybe his eternal healing was the miracle. That was not what she wanted to hear. Honestly, I don’t think any of us would want to hear that about our children. But could it be that the eternal healing really is the answer to our prayer?

I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, we have to be careful when we pray. We must include in our prayers that God help us to accept his will if it isn’t what we want.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Day 37 - Desperate

"Do not be afraid, only believe."
Luke 8:50b

Right before Thanksgiving, Carson had one of his "breathing spells."  It was awful.  Each breath he took was a task; he struggled with each gasp for air.  I was hurting so badly for him.    Breathing treatments weren't helping so I wrapped him in a blanket, took him outside, and sat under the carport with him in the night air while it rained, hoping the moisture and coolness of the air would open his airways.

There I was, his mom, unable to physcially do anything else.

As I sat there with him, I cried out to God to help my precious son.  I was scared. I was desperate.


A couple of years ago, our preacher did a wonderful sermon on carrying the burdens of others.  It was quite moving.  During the invitation, one of our church members came to the alter to pray.  She carried with her a burden no one should have.  Her precious grandson was battling cancer (he has been most of his life).  It was a blessing for me to kneel beside her as she prayed, crying out to our Heavenly Father, desperate for the healing of her Rylie. 

Today's scripture is quite moving. As mothers, we would do anything for our children.  I'm sure people like MckMama, Kelly, and Angie can relate to this story so much.  They all share beautiful stories of desperation for the healing of their children. 

It is quite humbling to kneel fall before our Lord in desperation, whether it is physical, mental, financial, or spiritual healing that we seek. We have to relinquish all control over the situation, handing it over to God, and trusting that He will answer our prayers.  He doesn't want us to be afraid. He wants us to believe in Him and what He is capable of doing. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

The Greatest Love Story Ever Told

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.
John 3:16

Thank you, Father, for loving me that much.

An Award? For Me?

Thanks to Kathleen for awarding me with the:

It is my first blogging award!  Here is how it works:

1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 8 recently discovered great bloggers.
4. Contact the bloggers and let them know about the award.

So, here are 7 things about me you might not know:
1. I am a hopeless romantic.  I am crazy over love songs and love stories.
2. My favorite verse is "This is the day that the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24.
3. At one time, I wanted to be an accountant. Then I realized you had to be good with math.
4.  I would love to run my own business...a bridal salon. The whole math thing would probably be a problem with that.
5. My eyes are different shapes.
6. I got jealous once in church. I didn't realize my BFF had such a great voice.
7. I have never had normal pets.

So now you know :)

I am passing my award to:


Day 36 - You and Whose Army?

I've always been quite amazed at the stories of demon possessed people in the Bible. We don't really get a real snapshot of what it was like for them.  Sometimes I picture scenes from horror movies.  But regardless of what the demons actually did to the possessed person, the fact of the matter was, Jesus was still victorious.

If we allow Him, He will be victorious over our personal demons. 

There is something that controls each of us.







Each can possess us. They can control us.  They can cause us to be puppets to their demands.  They can ruin our lives.

But there is HOPE. 


In each account of His casting out demons, He is VICTORIOUS.  The demons have no power over Him.

If we are being controlled by something other than Him, we need to acknowledge who Jesus is....He is the Son of the Most High. 

The demons recognized this.

Why is it difficult for us to sometimes do this?

What a joy it is to know that whatever it is I'm facing, whatever demon has me in chains, Jesus can take me and create in me a new being.  He will be VICTORIOUS. 

All to often we are filled with pride and won't allow Him the spot in our lives that He so deserves.  We want Him when it is convenient. We want His will when it doesn't interfere with ours.  That is when we become broken and defeated, possessed and controlled by evil.

If we humble ourselves and acknowledge Him, placing Him at the center of our lives, He will be victorious over that which we can not defeat alone.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Day 35 - Family Matters

When I read the scripture for today, I thought about MckMama, Jennifer McKinney.  For those of you who don't follow her blog, click here to meet her.  I have been fascinated by the journey she has been on and the journey she is on right now.  MckMama is in Africa. Why is this amazing?  She is a mother of 5 and she is teaching her children about being doers of the Word and how family isn't just who lives in your house.  I admire her for seeking God's will and being a doer of the Word.  She has been ridiculed, talked down to for taking this journey.  How can we as Christians degrade someone for being a doer of His Word?

God has created some of us to GO.  He has created some of us to STAY.  To know our place, we must place ourselves close to Him through prayer and Bible study. We must allow Him to lead the way.

I'd like to think I'm a STAY person.  I am a homebody. There is no place I'd rather be than with my family, or at Chaney's Dairy Barn or Dunkin Donuts with a good friend.  I can't picture myself in a foreign land (although the halls of an intermediate school sometimes seem foreign).   But God has sort of placed me in a GO position.  How?  We are a military family.  Although we are only in the early stages of this military journey and are in the reserves, not active duty, we know that things can change at any moment.  Right now Jeffrey is on GO. He is at drill.  Sure it is only an hour away, but the sacrifices are still being made.  He missed Colin's ball game yesterday. He is missing church today. He is missing two birthday parties today.  We had to cancel our date this weekend (fun when you find out 2 days before that you have drill).  Although he is nondeployable until he finishes seminary, we know that he could GO. 

That is not something we can worry about.  That is something that we have to TRUST God with.  We have to have the FAITH that if we are put in that GO position, that our Father will take care of us, whereever we may be.  I'm sure MckMama has put her trust and faith in God for the journey that she is on.

Some of us are doers of His Word in our neighborhoods and communities.

Some of us are doers of His Word around our state and country.

Some of us are doers of His Word around the world.

Regardless of where we are, we must touch lives for Jesus.  We must bring others into our family, the Family of God.  For you see, I'm so glad I'm a part of the family of God. I'm glad that I was invited by Wanda Hale to visit Calvary.  I'm glad that Calvary opened their hearts to us.  I'm glad that Dr. Copass saw a lost mother and led her to Jesus.  I'm glad that my children are being taught of His love and that Colin has opened his heart to his Heavenly Father.  I'm glad that my husband has allowed God to lead him into this opportunity to minister to soldier and their families.  I'm glad those who are involved in everything I've mentioned have been doers of the Word.

Consider this,  Where would you be if there were no doers of His Word?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Day 34 - Sowing Lessons

When we went to Ft. Jackson for the CHBOLC graduation, we were fortunate enough to embark on a mini vacation.  One of the things we saw was The Angel Oak Tree.
 Words can't describe the awesome-ness of this tree.  It is estimated to be 1500 years old or older.
This tree has withstood many storms, including Hurricane Hugo.

Needless to say, its roots run deep.

I am a mere child when it comes to my walk with Jesus.  I am a relatively new Christian and still have lots to learn.  However, I'm trying to grow in my walk with him each day. My roots are still growing deeper.  I know I will stumble. I'm human.  But I have faith in Him who has saved me.  

I am blessed.  I'm not bragging about that; I just know what God has done for me.  My children are healthy.  Our major concern revolves around Carson and his respiratory issues.  We are not dealing with major illnesses, for which I am thankful.  Any financial issues we have, we know they are of no fault but our own.  We may struggle sometimes, but we still manage. Our stresses are the daily kind of things. What a blessing! With that being said, I know God can place me in the middle of a storm at anytime.  I don't want to be the person who loses faith when a storm hits.   I want to be the person who stands strong in my faith, to bring him honor and glory, to show the value of his promises and his word.

I don't want to fail Him because I know He won't fail me.

In my sermon notes, I found where our pastor had preached on this passage.  One thing I wrote was this:

What will God's Word do?
1. Establish Us
2. Instruct Us
3. Cleanse Us
4. Keep Us From Sin

That brings me to this:
What can we do to allow God's Word to do those things?

I think:
1. We need the church
2. We need Christian fellowship
3. We need to devote time to prayer and worship
4. We need to live a life of praise and thanksgiving
5. We need to be in a church with a pastor and teachers who teach God's Word, not feel good messages.
6. We need to devote time to Bible study and devotions.

All in all, we need to have an open heart and an open mind.  If we are not open to God's Word, it won't do us any good. 

The Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it.  For then you will make your way proseprous and then you will have good success. Joshua 1:8

Friday, February 11, 2011

The Stuff

I am totally stealing this from Melanie
We all get caught up in the stuff of life.  IF you are like me, this "stuff" gets the best of you and makes you someone you don't like.  God, please help me look over the stuff that gets me and not let it take me further from you.

mute the playlist before playing video.

Love it. Love it. Love it. 

Is it Possible?

Today we have sunshine. 
 We had it yesterday too.

But none of this...

 So, we played
 and played
 and ate
So is it possible that today, we will thaw out? I have been in this house since I got home at 2:00 Monday.  Sam's Club and Target are calling my name!  We are out of formula and diapers. We need Valentine's for parties on Monday and baby shower invitations.  I will try to venture out today.  The boys seem to have gotten over any "yuck" they've had lately (Carson is still coughing some). I will venture out today. I must.  

Day 33 - Go in Peace

Today, I really have no words of wisdom.

I will simply say this...

Peace is a gift from God. We either accept it or we don't.  If we choose to carry our burdens, allowing them to weigh us down, causing us to worry, we will not experience peace through Him.  Peace comes with Faith.  God is the only one we can really and truly depend on.  We may not like the way he always works (too slow, not our answer), but he is faithful in taking care of us.  If we don't have faith in him, we will have no peace.  We can allow Satan to control our feelings and our situation, or we can turn to God.

I came home from work with no peace about a situation.  One of my students was in the middle of domestic dispute the night before.  Weapons were involved. The local authorities allowed the children to stay in the house.  I came home full of worry that the child would experience something worse.  I had to hand it over to God.  The situation was totally out of my hands.  The authorities had been involved and made their decision (not the one I would have made especially with children involved).  I had to hand over my worry.

The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make is face shine upon you,
     And be gracious to you.
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
     And give you peace.
Numbers 6:24-26

I will both lie down in peace and sleep,
For you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8

Great peace have those who love your law,
And nothing causes them to stumble.
Psalm 119:165

I will lift up my eyes to the hills -
From whence comes my help?
My help comes form the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.

The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
The Lord shall preserve your going out and coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.
Psalm 121

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Hey, You With the Face! Revealed

Ok, I think the face scared you since you didn't guess. No, Carter is not pooping. Just so you know, I wouldn't post a picture of that! 

Would you like to guess again?


Do you just want me to tell you?







He now has teeth on the top and bottom.  At first I thought he was pooping too.  Then I heard a scraping sound.  When I got closer, I could actually hear the teeth moving against each other as he worked his jaws back and forth.

Just so you know....

Jeffrey thought Carter was pooping.

Day 32 - Talking to Ourselves

Back when Jeffrey and I were dating, he had this old Ford Bronco. I loved that thing. We had gone out riding around one day and drove out to the creek.  It was really muddy so Jeffrey decided to go muddin'.  For those of you that aren't as country as we are, that simply means you ride around in the mud for fun. And yes, it is fun. Well, I remember the bumpiness of the ride, and I was holding on tight! Jeffrey got tickled and started laughing.  He said that I said, "Maybe I should get out!"  I totally don't remember saying that, but I was thinking it.  It just so happened that I let my thoughts slip from my mouth.

Of course, that is a funny story that we still laugh about, but I do have to be honest.  There have been times I've been so thankful people haven't known my thoughts because they have been ugly or judgmental.  This study today, however, is a good reminder that although other people may not know our thoughts, God does. 


Beth asked the question, What does it mean to love God "with all your mind?" I may be totally off, but I think it means that we should dedicate our minds to Him.  How? By being careful what we read, watch, and listen to.  Those things can and will influence our thoughts.  If we spend time filling our minds with that which is unpure, our minds become unpure.  That leads to unpure actions and words.  However, if we fill our minds with things of love, compassion, encouragement, things of HIM, then our words and actions will then reflect that. 

Another point I get from today's study is to not be so judgemental.  I am no better than anyone else.  If I ever seem to come across that way, I'm sorry.  I am a different, new being because I am a child of God.  My life MUST reflect this.  I know there are times that I fail and bring shame to my Father, but hopefully for the most part, I bring him honor. 

I know there are things that I need help with, lots of help, areas of my life that are struggles for me.  We all have those.  Those areas don't need to be discussed or listed here, because God knows them. He knows the dirt from which I come. He knows my thoughts. He knows my prayers. He knows my heart.  He will continue working on me to make me the woman he has planned. 

Until I am a completed work, I must fix my thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable.  Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Philippians 4:8.


Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Too Cute Not to Share

So the good mom that I am was working on laundry.  My precious almost 11 month old was in his bedroom playing when I went in to get his dirty laundry.  When I came back no more than 3 minutes later, this is how I found him.


Wordless Wednesday

Hey! You With the Face!

Can you guess what my sweet babe is doing in this picture? Why is he making this face?

Day 31 - At Home in a Pharisee's House

Carson and I are such homebodies.  We like a good outing, but honestly, there is no place like home.

When it comes to gatherings, I'd much rather have them at my house.  We have the Griswold Grimes Family Christmas at our house. We celebrate Independence Day at our house.  Birthdays are especially a big deal.  And we don't do anything small.  We invite everybody and their grandma. 

At my house, I know my children are safe.  I know other children coming over will be safe.  We don't have any inappropriate or dangerous things.  Our neighborhood is safe so the kids can get out and play.  Sometimes it is just easier to do things at home.  After all, with 3 kids it is like preparing to go deep sea diving to go anywhere. 

I like to open up my home.  I want people to be comfortable and enjoy themselves. I want them to feel at home.

I don't want to become judgemental when it comes to whom I am with at a gathering. 

To answer Beth's question, I prefer not to spend my time with people who are negative, judgmental, and crude.  I don't enjoy the things they enjoy. I don't like their topic of conversation. I don't like to be in a negative enviroment.  I guess that is why I enjoy gatherings at my house.  I can pretty much control what goes on.  Sometimes those who don't have a heart for Jesus can stir things up, but that can happen anywhere.

Jesus, however, can take those situations and environments that make me uncomfortable and use them for good.  He can question and convict without being harsh.  Jesus is going to, not necessarily fit in everywhere, but make each place a better place because of his presence.

Whether we are having folks at our house or we are the invited guest, we should always be sure that others see Jesus in us.  We shouldn't get caught up in the celebratory atmosphere in such a way that we seem no different than those that don't know Jesus.

Just because we don't drink, party, cuss, and the like doesn't mean we are better than others, it just means we are different. Jesus is different.  If we are His, others should see him in us.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

The Incredibles

That's us.

Well, not in the picture exactly.

Afterall, I have 3 boys. 

And I'm not at all stretchy like ElastiGirl.

I doubt my husband could lift a car unless he really had to.

My kids don't have super powers unless you count the ability to survive with no sleep and the only consumption of any type of nutrition consists of milk, chicken nuggets, pizza, or grilled cheese. 

So, I guess we are not The Incredibles afterall.

The only thing incredible about us is the fact that Jesus is the center of our home.

We are not the perfect family.

Sometimes we "vegge out" on junk food.  Sometimes we lose our tempers. Sometimes we spend too much time on the computer or watching TV.

We laugh.
We cry.
We love.

We love each other.
We love our neighbors.
We love God.

We have no super powers, but we have FAITH. 

I've been reading some blogs of gals who have chosen a word for the year. A word to live by so to speak. 

I guess if I had to choose a word, my word would be


That word seems to jump out at me a lot lately.  Much of what I am learning from my 90 Days with Jesus goes back to having faith.

I've been asked the question, "How do you do it?"

Well, I'm not sure what "it" is, but I'm assuming "it" is "How do you get through life with all the demands of being a wife to a soldier, teacher of 77 students, mother to 3 boys, part time Sunday school teacher, and friend?"

I don't know HOW I do it, but I know I JUST DO IT. Sorry for sounding like a Nike commercial.  I am not ElastiGirl or Wonder Woman.  I am simply me. 

As for me, my strength comes for Him.  God carries me through.  He gives me wisdom. He gives me grace. He shows me mercy so many times.  I was a big stinkin' nobody that God loves very much.So much that I am a child of God.  Everything I am, everything I do, everything I trudge through, is because of and through Him.  Without God I am nothing.  With Him I am made glorious (David Crowder says so). 

I have the same gripes and moans as other moms.  I suffer through sleepless nights like the best of them.  I have headaches and back pains. I have lots of gray hair to go along with the daily stresses of life.  I lose my temper too much. I let a few choice words exit my mouth. I embarrass myself. I bring shame to my Father. My house is cluttered and needs to be cleaned. I let dishes stack up and run out of clean wash rags.  Despite my many flaws, my husband adores me.  My children love me (sometimes). I've got a church family I can always turn to. My my life is a life worth living.

I'm not Mrs. Incredible.

I'm simply me.

God is working on me. I need lots of toning and refining...physically, mentally, and spiritually. 

Day 30 - Falling Forward

We are all going to have doubts about something life throws at us, that is a given.  It is how we handle those doubts that will have us falling forward into the arms of Jesus or backwards in the snares of Satan.  It we are doubting a relationship, we should lay that doubt at the foot of the cross in prayer and speak with that person.  If we are doubting a position, an event, a decision we've made, again, we should take it to the cross.  Even if we are doubting Jesus, take it to Him just like John did.  Doubt is contagious. Doubt is dangerous.  Jesus knows what is is our hearts, that is why it is best just to take it to Him so he can help us get through it.  Then one day, we will understand a little better why we tried and tested.

I found this in our Baptist Hymnal and wanted to share it.

By and By (When the Morning Comes)

Trials dark on every hand,
And we cannot understand
All the ways that God would lead us
To that blessed promised land;
But He'll guide us with His eye,
And we'll follow till we die;
We will understand it better by and by.

By and by, when the morning comes,
When the saints of God are gathered home,
We will tell the story
How we've overcome;
We will understand it better by and by.

Oft our cherished plans have failed,
Disappointments have prevailed,
And we've wandered in the darkness,
Heavy handed and alone;
But we're trusting in the Lord,
And according to His word,
We will understand it better by and by

Temptations, hidden snares
Often take us unawares,
And our hearts are made to bleed
For some thoughtless word or deed,
And we wonder why the test
When we try to do our best,
But we'll understand it better by and by.

Charles A. Tindley