Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year on the Horizon

No, I have not slipped off into the land of's just been a busy week. Having taken the week before Christmas off, this week has been payback at work! But I feel a little more settled in today. Today - December 31 - New Year's Eve! Can you believe 2008 is almost gone, and 2009 is on the horizon? What kind of year will it be? The way our economy is going, I'm sure there will be trials in '09. But like most every year, I'm sure it will be a mixed bag.

This morning in my short (but rich) devotion time, I read Psalms 24 and 25 (both of David). After being told in Psalm 24 that the Lord is in charge, Psalm 25 reminded me to trust in the Lord. What caught my eye, though, was the first line of Psalm 25, "To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul." I thought to myself, "Well, that sounds fine, but exactly how do you 'lift up your soul'?" See I want 2009 to be a year of what I call Re-purpose. I need to refocus on Jesus - have a Jesus-year as Beth Moore has put it in her blog. To do this, she has encouraged Bible verse memorization (or familiarity). Of which over 2,300 of us have signed up for! (Can you believe it?)

But as I looked at the study notes in my ESV Bible on Psalm 25's "lift up my soul" I saw the corresponding words - "long, desire, set the heart on, count on, direct my desire" - here's the one that caught my eye - "be greedy." I started thinking,now that's the way to refocus on greedy for Him. See, I understand greed. I think we all have a little greed in us. (In my opinion, that's what's gotten our country in this financial mess.) So if we turn our greed away from things and turn it toward Jesus, what a difference that would make!

I tend not to make New Year's Resolutions, since they are usually all broken by January 2! But this year, my desire is to Re-purpose my heart for a Jesus-year. How will I do it? Well, I'm sure by trial and error. I do plan to try to memorize (or at least focus on) scripture. But Psalm 25 has given me inspiration...I want to be greedy for Jesus! I want to desire Him above all else, set my heart on Him and long for Him. I'm sure I will fail many times, but just think - what if little by little my heart gets it! Oh, yeah, there's a new year on the horizon, and I pray it's going to be one full of Jesus!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas is in the air!

Christmas Eve...the presents are wrapped...the casserole is ready to be put in the oven tomorrow morning...the cheese is grated for the grits casserole tomorrow...Santa is on the move...K is taking care of last minute things while D is napping on the couch...I am tired but awaiting time for the Christmas Eve service. We will come home and put in It's a Wonderful Life finish some last minute wrapping, have some hot,spiced tea and cry as George realizes he really is the wealthiest man in town. Nothing like it!

May you all have a very Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Proverbs 31 Woman

Today we will lay to rest my sister-in-law. Even though she had been battling some serious health issues this year,it was totally unexpected. K and I stopped to see her last Wednesday,and though she was having to begin physical therapy again, she had a great attitude and was ready to get going. You can imagine how unexpected the call was on Thursday that we had lost her. She was tired and went to take a nap, and as my husband said,"woke up in heaven."

To me she was the true Proverbs 31 Woman. Having lost her husband in a tragic accident 30+ years ago, she raised three fine young daughters. They are hard-working, hold high morals, and are God-fearing women. She became post-master in her small town and served her community with dignity. She helped her neighbors, loved her family, and faithfully served in her church. Her works brought her "praise at the city gate." (Proverbs 31:31b)

I loved her, love her family and we will miss her greatly. "Her children arise and call her blessed;" (Proverbs 31:29a) and so does her sister-in-law.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

One Week!

I cannot believe Christmas is only one week away! I still have just a little shopping to do. Need to pick up this and that. I have lost 2 gift certificates I bought at the beginning of the month - so it will be a scavenger hunt at my house this evening!

I have been meaning to blog all week (it's busy the week before Christmas, imagine that!). I had the best time last weekend - it was girl time. Three other girls and I went to Charleston Thursday and Friday. All we did was shop, eat, talk and visit with friends! I love going through the shops on King Street. Charleston has such neat things. Some things I will NEVER be able to afford, but that doesn't mean you can't have fun looking. And some things I can NEVER find in other places! The weather was not near as bad as it was here - it just sprinkled some. However, the people in the Market started packing up early. So that was a bust. Ate some GREAT food and visited with some wonderful friends. Then on Saturday, we had our annual ladies luncheon where 12 of us meet each year and catch up on each other's lives, eat (of course) and exchange such sweet gifts. Needless to say, by 4:00 Saturday I was slap dab worn out! Then I had to decorate two, yes two, Christmas trees! I am looking forward to the next week off.

May each of you have a season of wonder and awe this Christmas. Remember the wonder of the virgin birth of our Savior and the awe that God came down to dwell in human flesh - Emmanuel, God with us! What more do we need?

Love to all!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Whirl!

My mind is a whirl today with Christmas ponderings. We had a great Bible Study Christmas Gathering last night. It was a small, but lovely group of ladies. We chatted about nothing and about Everything - the Everything being Christ. We ate and drank and gathered around the Christmas tree for devotions. Hugs, smiles and tears. Life is a mixed bag, isn't it? Blessings and challenges. Christmas time doesn't change that.

Through community contacts, I have learned about school children who may not have presents this Christmas - this difficult economy has not spared their families. Many I know face a difficult time with downturns in business, loss of jobs, vanishing bank/retirement accounts and the struggling economy. Unfortunately Christmas has come to mean a mound of presents instead of His Presence. I saw someone who struggles constantly just today looking at gifts in the dollar store. On her face, I could read the difficulty to provide for those gifts yet again. I said a prayer for her - not knowing her specific needs, but knowing that she does need.

This time of year is filled with joy, peace and love, yet at the same time, they can be difficult to find. So, my prayer for you all is that His Presence will fill you with joy in the midst of difficult circumstances, peace even in these troubled times, love when the world seems so cold and most importantly hope in the One who came, who will come again, who loves you dearly and gave his life for you.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Creative Nothing!

I'm sitting here trying to think of something creative for a new post...and failing miserably! As I went through this process, I wondered, "What's on your mind?" and in answering myself, I said, "Nothing!" What a hoot - a mind with nothing in it! But I do, in fact, have a lot on it. I talked with a friend today who is going through difficult financial times with the future not looking too bright right now...I'm concerned about a relative's health...Other financial struggles...And as I tie up loose ends around the office I'm trying to mentally prepare for my physical. YUK! I hate this time of the year for my annual physical. My cholesterol is sky-high from Thanksgiving. The eating season has started;so if I did lose weight, it's baaaaaack! I'm already thinking that next year I should just wait until my birthday which would mean skipping 2009 altogether since my b/day is in February! Last night K brought home the vacation schedule for next year. And as we tried to discuss what to do in 2009, I couldn't even figure out what to do for the rest of 2008! Too much for this nothing brain, I guess.

So the point of this post is that even though we may not have much creative in our minds sometime, we sure do have a lot on it. I stopped to focus on a verse in Ephesians, "I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe." (Ephesians 1:18-19a)We have a hope to which God has called us if we will allow the eyes of our hearts to be enlightened...He promises riches - not money - but inheritance in the saints (true lasting riches) and incomparably great power (God's power, not ours)...for us who believe. We have much on our minds, but never forget that God has a hope for inheritance for you...power for you...

May your heart be enlightened (and lightened) by God's light...
B E L I E V E!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Catching Up!

Hello one and all! (It's probably just one, but I can imagine!) Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. We did exactly what (I think) you're supposed to do on that day - eat LOTS, sleep, and especially enjoy time with family, giving thanks for all of our many blessings.

Yes I did head to the mall on Black Friday - see, I did my part for our economy! Was able to pick up several gifts in a relatively short time. Headed out about 6:45 and was home by 10:00 AM and watching White Christmas! The crowds were not that bad at that time of the day - I did hear that things got busier around lunch time. I'm doing well with my shopping list, too. K and I will head out Friday to round up gifts for D and enjoy a "date day." Twice a year - at Christmas and for my birthday - K and I spend a day out shopping. He is so good to give me this treat. I really think he enjoys it for these 2 days, too. We shop, buy, and eat a wonderful lunch.

Can't wait to get my tree. See, we still buy a real tree, and since we have gas heat and a fireplace (both of which dry out a real tree) we wait a little later to put one up. We will also put one in the Man Cave this year! I want to pick up a couple extra decorations this year. Have an idea for my mantle, which I want to work on this weekend. So I'm getting pumped!

Guess I better go get pumped on work! Y'all have a great day.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


It's quiet around here this afternoon. Preschool has gone home for the Thanksgiving holidays; other office staff gone for the day - so that leaves me and one pastor in the office this afternoon. Phones are silent, folding machine turned off, copier waiting for requests. Unusually quiet. We don't always like the quiet, do we? If we're honest, we don't know what to do with it. Most of my day is filled with noise - people coming and going, radio, family, TV, telephones. So when the quiet comes in, I don't know what to do, either!

Right now it's kind of nice. It's time to reflect and relax some. I don't mean relaxing as in putting your feet up, closing your eyes and taking a nap. But a time for the senses to relax and maybe regroup. Time to just be - even if it's for 5 immediate noise. Time to take a deep breath, relax those shoulders, and find the calm within. Nice.

I plan to enjoy this for these last few minutes of the work day before I am bombarded with more noise when I get in traffic, stop by the grocery store and head home to start supper. I hope you find a few minutes of quiet in the busyness of your life - holiday season and all. If you have to, run to the bathroom and lock the door for just 5 minutes. Sometimes, it will help bring a calm back into your spirit, and then you can face the rest of the noisy day.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Monday!

As I was going through my usual blogs: BigMama, BooMama, Travis Cottrell, All Access, I wondered to myself --- have I ever blogged on a Monday? You see for me, Mondays are more like - Nondays! Mondays are not my best days to put it lightly! But at the same time, Mondays are usually my busiest days with staff meeting, major drafting of bulletin info and just usual beginning of the week "stuff." It's one of my long days, and by the time I walk and head home, I don't have the creative energy to post. So I thought I would just break habits and tell everyone Happy Monday! If I don't find the time to post before Thanksgiving - may you all have a very blessed Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

What If?

For those of you whose churches follow a liturgical calendar, the first Sunday in Advent begins on November 30. Being Lutheran we are HIGHLY liturgical. The thing about Advent is the call to anticipate the coming of the Christ child. We don't rush into singing Christmas hymns instead we look back at the events that led to Christ coming as a child and look forward to Christ's second coming. It is totally against our world culture. For heaven's sake - it's against my culture. I will have my Christmas music out next week and will long to sing the wonderful Christmas hymns that come and go too fast.

But what if...our Advent season became something different? My pastor sent me a head's up about this video out on You Tube. Check it out. I like the idea. What if...we really did slow down, spend less, give more of ourselves and develop those relationships with God and with others? I'm intrigued. Maybe together we can become part of the Advent Conspiracy in some small way. What if gradually, we changed our mindset and our habits? What if we became more Christ-like? What if?

Another Week

Time really flies by. I can't believe it's been a week since I've last blogged. It has been busy, but as I just told a friend in an email, I can't tell you busy with what! :) As far as work, this is a busy time of the year. Along with it being newsletter week, it's time for Thanksgiving bulletins and Advent mailings, end of the year reports are coming up and holiday happenings. All of this makes for busy days and time flying by faster than I care to admit!

Do you ever glimpse yourself in a reflection as you're passing by a mirror and wonder, "Who's that?" I do, and wonder, "Who's that old person!" It's meeeeeee. When did I get this old? My energy is zapped by 8:00 in the evening now...especially with the shorter days.

As I bemoan all of this, I remember how blessed I am. My Bible study group is on our last lesson of Stepping Up, and God's timing always amazes me. The last week's lessons (for me) focused on unity and God's blessings. What better time to discuss this than the week before Thanksgiving...the week before the "madness" starts...the week before cooking a huge meal (or just being part of one)...the week before the masses head to the malls for the perfect Christmas gift...the week before our group breaks for the holidays. How fitting that we end remembering how much God has blessed us and how much MORE He wants to bless us. As we continue our pilgrimage in this life, let us remember how God longs to bless us with His presence. May you all experience the powerful presence of the Lord God Almighty during this season of Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


For some reason today I am feeling very restless. Things on my mind and don't know what to do/say or whether to do/say anything at all. It's difficult a lot of times, isn't know when to speak and when to stay silent. Seems to me I've been too vocal lately, and it hasn't turned out so pretty. Thing is it wasn't as though I even realized my mouth was stirring things up - I only find out weeks later. So my current decision is to be quiet.

I guess I'm a bit like "Martha" (of Martha and Mary fame) today - I have a "crowd in my head." It's not so much that I'm worried about things, just concerned...knowing that most of what I'm concerned about is out of my hands. Yes, I've been in prayer about them this morning. Sometimes, though, it feels so much better to share them with a friend, but then once something is shared - you can't take it back. And not everything needs to be shared...or it doesn't need to be shared at this exact time.

Waiting is difficult. I imagine reading this blog today is difficult. :) So keeping it in has me restless...waiting to see how God will move has me restless...knowing that it may be months, years, before fruit is realized has me restless. Knowing that another person is in charge has me restless (I want to give my opinion!).

Where to find peace and hope...only in God - who is the One truly in charge.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." (Romans 15:13)

Overflowing with hope instead of a flood of words...sounds like Divine Intervention to me!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Less Than...More Than

If you saw my post yesterday, you got a glimpse into my mind lately. Overwhelmed is where I felt my brain was going yesterday. This morning I felt less than...less than effective in ministry...less than effective in parenting...less than effective in working...less than effective as a spouse... You get the picture. Anyway in my prayer time, I prayed about my "less than." As I began my morning devotions, I thought I would make a list of everything I'm trying to change about myself. Have you ever felt that way? That maybe you would like a new you? (I can hear Bob Barker now opening the curtain --- A BRAND NEW YOU!) I came up with 11 areas I'm trying to change. Now, any of you who have worked on goal setting know that that's way too many to be effective with any of them.

One of my favorite daily devotions is Today's Seed. The devotion I received this morning said, "Teach me how to take the limits off my thinking so I can be more than I am alone and do more than I am able of myself. Thank You for giving me a capability that extends beyond what I am and reaches all the way to all You are."

We have the capability to be more than - but only through Christ. I thank Him that He answers prayers and puts our requests in perspective. No, I can't make 11 changes at one, I can't do it on my own. Doesn't matter if it's 11 goals or 1 goal, I will fail without Christ. But with Him...anything is possible!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Different Directions

It's Monday, and my mind is full of random thoughts all heading in different directions. That's the way Mondays seem to be as I try to refocus my mind on work and not home projects. So here's a glimpse into the mind of an aging blond! :)

Can you believe it's 2 1/2 weeks until Thanksgiving?!!! Part of my family is coming to my house, which needs to be dusted and organized...not to mention the cooking. But I do love to have family at Thanksgiving. I say part because my Mom & Dad are divorced and remarried. It's tough to try to fit in three families in one weekend. But my dad and step mom travel many times because that's also their anniversary weekend. I haven't figured out the in-laws yet. My sister-in-law who usually hosts it, is recuperating from not sure what will be up there!

Sending prayers up for D who has a H U G E test today that he's not really prepared for. Why must we learn some of our greatest lessons from our mistakes? Prayers the test won't be as bad as he thinks it will be...but also for a lesson well-learned even if it is the hard way.

My mind is also on Christmas - gifts, schedule (will Daddy travel away from home again this Christmas?), vacation, gifts, meal, tree, gifts, decorations, parties, gifts, day after Thanksgiving shopping. The real meaning of Christmas gets lost in all of this, doesn't it? Maybe it's time to bring in my Christmas CDs. There are years I start listening early!

Supper tonight...supper tomorrow...friends I miss...Bible studies to finish...Bible studies to start...retreats to plan...burnout with youth committee...mother and step-mother birthdays...spending too much....not saving enough...feeling less than...

So there it is - a mind going in umpteen different directions. Need to refocus on the One who can energize me.

"I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I put my hope." (Psalm 130:5)

Waiting and hoping....

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

New Beginnings

Well, I guess tomorrow we will have a new President-elect and begin the process of transfer of power. I hope everyone was able to vote. I stood in line about 1 hour 15 minutes. Not bad considering some other places. Now I'm trying to find something to watch other than election results. Don't get me wrong, I'm switching back and forth to it, but I'm not up to listening to them dissect every tiny thing. I'm sure before it's all over we'll find out what the candidates had to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

What is wonderful is that so many people got out and voted. We are taking ownership in our future. I loved to see moms with their children. Hearing the questions of the children and parents telling them about the process of voting. K told me he heard one mom explaining to her son that two people want to be president, but we have to vote for one. At which point the little boy said, "I want to be president! Can I be president, too!" we go...looks like a blue map so far...but here comes some red. They're predicting SC to be red, as usual. I have trouble understanding how they can call things so early. I guess with computers it's all electronic and fast! I'm watching NBC, and it looks like people are really into it...coloring a map...watching the big map at Rockefeller skating rink. They're talking about Tim Russert...I miss him...This will go on all night.

I don't know if your candidate will win or not. But remember no matter what - God is in charge. Daniel 2:20-21 says, "Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons; he sets up kings and deposes them. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning." It can be scary when what we think is best doesn't happen. But God knows best - He changes, He sets up and He deposes. God can use all things to accomplish His plans.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Feelin' Old!

Yesterday evening I was driving to the Youth Ministry Committee Meeting, and I started feeling very old! It's only a mile from my house to the church - but the feeling hit me loud and clear! A couple young girls were in a car in front of me, and I could tell they were jivin' to the music - hands in the air and groovin'! (Even my use of words shows my age!) I remember when I used to do that. Then it hit me - I am OVER 50! Like all of a sudden I realized it - like I haven't been in my 50s for a couple years - like I've been living in my little fantasy world where I don't get any older.

I wonder if we all have a little fantasy world going on inside of us sometime. We look at others and wonder what happened, but that mirror we look in somehow seems masked! We see the "girl" inside of us. And you know, that's good. Yes, we need to be honest with ourselves, but at the same time we can reconnect with our youthfulness. Tap into that girl inside of you. Seek your own "hands in the air" moments. Maybe it's a song you love - maybe it's a dance you did with your husband - maybe it's a movie - maybe it's a style of clothes (if you're old enough like me, the clothes of your youth come back into style with a little twist) - maybe it's a haircut - maybe it's an old friendship - maybe it's children - maybe it's youth. Whatever - remember there's still a little girl inside of you. Let's lift those hands in the air and celebrate - no matter what our age!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wednesday --- Interrupted

It's been a morning of "catching up" on a few things...trying to tie loose ends together. As I was switching gears, I decided to take a moment to check on my child's progress at school. See reports cards come out soon, but I'm not sure what day. As I was attempting to check the high school on-line calendar (don't get me started on the inadequacy of this calendar, in my opinion) I did not see when report cards are issued, but I did see that in November the seniors will be fitted for their caps and gowns. Then it hit "baby" only has two more years before he will be "fitted." I cannot believe how fast these years have flown by. The pulling away has already begun, of course. It's natural - there are things to do, places to go, friends to see, and he hasn't even started driving yet! My "baby doll dumpling" (don't tell him I said that on-line!) is growing up in the blink of an eye.

The Preschool children are trick-or-treating today, and I can remember taking time off work to come with D as he walked around to Chapin businesses. Little did I know then that it would go by so fast. Maybe I should have stopped and savored that time a little more. Maybe I should do the same now. See my problem is that I only have one child to experience all of this with. No, it's not a problem, it's a joy. Because we thought we wouldn't even have one. How faithful God is!

Thank you, Lord, for all the joys and struggles of motherhood. I'm so glad I didn't have to miss it!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


In the beginning, God created...(Genesis 1:1) thus we have the first descriptive word about God - creative. And since God created man in His own image (Genesis 1:26-
27) I think we all enjoy plunging into our creative side. Well today I've been creating an Advent brochure to go out with our Advent devotional, and it has been so much fun! Choosing a design...searching for artwork to go with the theme of the book...adding bits and pieces of information...playing with the layout. Then when I printed it out - it all matched so well. There's a lot of satisfaction in seeing the works of your hands being completed.

I've had a difficult time plugging into my creative side lately. I've been wondering if I've unplugged from the source (God). So it was good to work on this particular project. I've wondered, too, if it's age! :) I have so many things I'd like to do, but by 9:00 PM, I'm about down for the count! (Of course, you have to remember us Bolands love to hybernate as the days get shorter and the weather gets cooler.) There are times I wish all aspects of my job were driven by creativity. Maybe, I just need to have a different perspective. And maybe, like this brochure, when I feel procrastination kick-in, I just need to stick with it until all the pieces and parts come together.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Thought for the Day

Y'all!!! It has been a busy week. I meant to post this yesterday, then started this morning and now it's afternoon. So let me see if I can get this thought may be too late or too disjointed!

On Monday evening I went to a jewlery party. Heaven knows I have enough, but love to see the new stuff. The sales lady asked who wore a watch, and then proceeded to say that our watch needs a "buddy." Prefferably, of course, a piece of their jewlery! I smiled to myself Wednesday morning as I thought about that - a watch buddy! Neat marketing tool. Is it any wonder that we are swayed that the things of this world!

But I also thought about the things we do to "sell" Christianity. Why isn't a relationship with Jesus attractive on its own? We seem to put our trust in things of this world that are more readily seen, felt and touched. In my devotions this morning I read part of Jeremiah 10. In verse 5, God, through the prophet Jeremiah describes Israel's (our) idols as such, "Like a scarecrow in a melon patch, their idols cannot speak; they must be carried because they cannot walk. Do not fear them; they can do no harm nor can they do any good." In other words, they ware worthless - they can do NOTHING. For some reason they make us feel like SOMETHING...but it all depends on looks, perception and the world view.

I think my favorite part of my devotion this morning was this, "Tell them this: 'These gods, who did not make heavens and the earth, will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.'" But God made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding. (Jer. 10:11-12) Our idols will eventually the heavens and the earth that God created. Why do we look to the creation to be our gods instead of the Creator? May we realize that, "He who is the Portion of Jacob is not like these, for he is the Maker of all things, including Israel, the tribe of his inheritance - the Lord Almighty is his name." Let us never forget!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

It's Here!!!!

Travis Cottrell's CD Ring the Bells came yesterday. I wasted no time downloading it to my i-pod. Can't wait to go walking to some of the tunes today. I love the title song which features Natalie Grant. Also, the song Jesus Saves is so awesome. You can here it herein a recap of the New England Nights.

The CD is also currently playing on my computer. So anyone who walks in my office will think I have lost it playing Christmas songs in October. Just a reminder that I work for a Lutheran church where you don't hardly even utter the words Christmas until December 24!

My working buddy who has been gone for a two week vacation is back. So gotta run. Don't forget...check out the CD. It's GREAT!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Prayers, Answers & Confessions

In my prayer time this morning, I asked God to give me the heart of a servant so that I could serve Him. Be careful what you ask for, especially when it's in-line with God's will, because you just might get it. shown how far you are from it.

Of course, I am the latter. God has hit me square between the eyes as to how far away my heart is from being a servant's heart with two real, live examples. And it's not even noon yet!

I delivered something to the administrative assistant at another church. I had never met her before, but she seems to be a precious woman with a heart for serving God's people. As we discussed our common work, I could see in her a willingness to serve the people of her congregation that I seem to have lost. Oh, I remember when it was there. But now, after almost 10 years, it feels too much like work and not serving.

The other example happened right here in the office. Something I should have done but did not want to, was gladly done by a volunteer helping out this week. In my defense, I have back trouble which keeps me from doing some of the more physical, lifting duties. I have overdone it before and been in severe pain. However, I could hear God saying to my heart - you should have done that...or at least taken the lead.

So here I sit - examining my less-than a servant's heart. I confess that I have lost my passion somewhere along the way. I believe I have a new prayer - for forgiveness, strength to make the turn and conversion of my heart to one much more humble.

Prayers, Prayers, Prayers

Today my son leaves for Annapolis with the ROTC. They will visit Quantico, see a Navy football game and who knows what else because he lost his "agenda!" What can I say, he is my son, and he didn't steal that trait! They return home sometime Sunday afternoon.

I'm requesting prayers, prayers, prayers for a safe trip. How appropriate that this week we studied Psalm 121 in our Stepping Up series. The Psalm that talks about God being our protector and helper - He will not let the sun harm you by day or the moon by night. Thank you, Lord. I may be weird, but I always worry when my son goes on trips without us. Heck, I even worry when we all go on a trip. Maybe I worry just to worry. Don't we all at times?

But it is good for him to go off and have fun with friends - good for him and good for his parents. We, too, need time to reconnect. Because before you know it, he'll be in college, and we'll be back to two. So I want to celebrate these times. Enjoy getting to know my husband all over again...but never more than a text message away from my boy.

So my prayer is for D to have a good trip, a blast with his "buds" and to arrive home safe and sound - to parents who also had the same type weekend. Lord, be our Protector!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Heart Touched by Love

Do you ever have those moments in your day where you are so touched by something it brings tears to your eyes? I just had one. As I was in the routine of delivering mail, I overheard our Preschool Director stop a child and ask him where he was going, then she whispered to him, "I love you." Tears are welling up even now. I don't know why, but that single act of love has impacted my day. And I told her, "You are so sweet." I think she knew why I said that, but I wanted to make sure she knew she was special, too.

Many times, I think we miss things like this. We have so much on our minds...are mired in the routine...or just trying to get a lot done in a little amount of time that we miss it. I thank God that I did not miss this one. I think that through our Preschool Director, God was telling that little boy that He loves him, too. We need to realize that God uses us to spread His love to others. Will we take advantage of every opportunity to do that? Will we open our hearts to love - the love God has for us and the love He wants us to share with others?

Open your heart - and be touched by His love!

Thursday, October 9, 2008


I have been really worrying about something lately. The details don't matter. We all worry from time to time. This was one of those things that I was afraid would have us in a choke hold for a while...years. When would we get a break. You know the kind of worry I'm talking about...upset stomach, can't sleep at night, weighing heavy on your mind.

This morning in my devotion time I continued in Jeremiah Chapter 1, verse 19 where in the last part of that verse the Lord says, "for I am with you and will rescue you." I remembered reading that yesterday, and sure enough verse 8 of chapter 1 says, "Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you..." I asked God this morning, are you saying this to me? I needed to know He was with me and would rescue me.

This afternoon I was led to read the very familiar part of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 6 that tells us not worry about tomorrow...each day has enough worries of its own.

Y' hubby called about 30 minutes ago with the news that our worries were for nothing. Can I say that again N O T H I N G. What we were worried about did not happen. "Thank you, Lord" were the first words out of my mouth, and K said he said the same thing. To be honest what we were worrying about was not life threatening - don't wig out on wondering what. The point is, God is with us and will rescue us. Next time our fears may be realized, but nevertheless, God is with us and will rescue us.

Real life problems are tough. The coming economic times are going to be very tight, I'm afraid. You never know what tomorrow will bring. But, God is with us and will rescue us. It may not be the rescue we want all the time, but if we turn to Him, He will NOT turn from us.

Each time He said that to Jeremiah, God was getting him ready for action. Maybe I need to keep my eyes open for a little action around here. What will I do in response to God's faithfulness? Yep, I think Jeremiah is going to have a of insight for me over the coming months. And, I'll be sure and let you know all about it!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Yahweh Immanuel

Today I was led to begin reading Jeremiah for my morning devotions. I could only get as far as Chapter 1, Verse 10 today. Those first 10 verses are powerful. They talk about how God forms us, knows us, sets us apart and appoints us (vs. 5). He accepts no excuses from us (vs. 6-7) because He is with us (vs. 8)and will equip us (vs. 9). As I was contemplating the impact of those verses and the number of times I've seen in scripture where God tells his people, "Do not be afraid...I am with you" I thought about the names of God. I AM (Yahweh) with you (Immanuel). I'm not sure those are the actual words in the Hebrew, but the concept is there for me. God is our YAHWEH IMMANUEL. Just look at that - Old Testament Yahweh, Covenant God - New Testament Immanuel, God with us - covenant fulfilled. What more could we need?

To me Jeremiah's words fit in with our current crisis. But will we turn to God with our financial woes? Will we turn from our greed, gluttony, pride and self-centeredness and return to God? I feel like our nation today is much like Israel was during Jeremiah's time. As I read through Jeremiah over the coming weeks, I'm anxious to see what words he has that may apply to us today. It will be an interesting journey because God's word seems to speak to us no matter what century we are in!

Christmas in October

OK...OK...Just yesterday I was complaining about a lighted Christmas tree in September. Just guess what I'm doing...Listening to Christmas music. Travis Cottrell's new Christmas CD is out and they are playing it on his website, and it is WONDERFUL! He has the most awesome voice. I'm running into town today for errands, and I just believe I'm gonna have to stop by LifeWay and pick it up. I noticed on Big Mama's blog that his album was #4 on i-tunes most downloaded holiday albums - and it just came out! To be honest I almost downloaded it last night when I was getting Toby Mac & Kirk Franklin's Lose My Soul..but I think my gift card had run out of money! I also thought I might like the flexibility of having the CD to play as well. But don't take my word for it...check it out for yourself.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Much About Nothing

I realized I had not blogged in a while. A problem I sometimes have is finding something news worthy in my day-to-day life. Doesn't matter if it's blogging or just catching up with friends. Many times, I feel that what's happening in my life isn't interesting enough to repeat. But here goes some much about nothing:

I cannot believe I have seen a lighted Christmas tree already. Coming back from the high school last week, I saw a tree in a local dress shop - all lit up! For heaven's sake it was still S E P T E M B E R. Does Christmas just seem to get earlier and earlier? But a good something about Christmas coming early...Travis Cottrell's new Christmas CD was released today. I just know it's going to be awesome! is just October. L O V E this weather. I can't remember when I last turned the A/C on, and we haven't used the heat I have high hopes for low usage on our next utility bill.

Getting ready for the new Bible Study - Stepping Up . We will get Travis and Beth in the same study! And believe it or not, I'm ready for homework.

My working buddy is on her way to Hawaii! Gonna miss her, but hope she has the bestest of times! We have a great group of volunteers who will help. Hopefully, nothing will fall through the cracks.

Our modest renovations are almost through. I'm afraid the labor bill will put me over the edge. But what you gonna do? Drew will be so excited when it's finished. We will have that extra room that we were really trying to plan for before house plans went awry.

As you can see...I really have a boring life. But...there's a lot to be said for boring!

If you're on a roller coaster ride right now, remember that no matter what, God is right beside you. These are scary times in our financial world. We plan for the future and then the bottom drops out. No matter whatever or whoever else forsakes us, God will never leave us or forsake us. And that's all that matters.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Rainy Days and Mondays...

I don't know about rainy days, but Mondays seem to be my stumbling block. OK, one of my stumbling blocks! Mondays have always been a difficult day for me --- unless it's a holiday. (My working buddy and I love holidays!) I don't know why that particular day is so difficult for me. Things seem to magnify on Mondays - I am much more irritated (and can I say, irritating!) about little things. I believe my co-workers might even support a work from home day for me on Mondays!

God took me to the proverbial "wood shed" today when I read 1 Peter 2:1, "Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy and slander of every kind." Ouch! I asked God this morning, "How do I do this?" His answer to me, 1 Peter 2:2, "Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good." Two verses - that's all I needed for my morning devotion. There was so much there for me to chew on, that I didn't need to go any further.

I heard His plea to me to "GROW UP!" I was acting like a "b-a-b-y" and I needed a little spiritual nourishment. God's Word will do that to me - He will jerk a knot in my tail when I need it. And praise be to God that He does. I need a little head-straightening sometimes. I am blessed, people. Why do I let my attitude get so out of control? I imagine that we all do. There are days when it would be better to just stay in the bed, but that's not an option.

God is always there for us. If we will crave the pure spiritual milk of His Word and His presence, we will taste and see that the Lord is good. I realized this morning what I should have done yesterday. I should have gotten on my knees in prayer and then pulled out my Bible for a drink of that spiritual milk. I pray that next time I'm feeling a little blue for no particular reason, I'll do just that.

"Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man (or woman) who takes refuge in Him." (Psalm 34:8)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Letting Go

Do you have trouble letting go of things? I do. Seems there are times I obsess over things that are not that big in the grand scheme of things. But when they're happening, they seem to be huge. My current (OK, let's be honest, on-going) struggle is letting go of the homework responsibility. Now to give myself some credit, I don't generally get involved until there's a project due. D has 2 projects due this week, and I have once again turned into the "Homework Nazi."

As I was sitting and praying about it this morning, I began to realize that I'm making a mountain out of a mole-hill. And I'm trying to be king (or queen) of this mountain. It's not's Drew's. He will never learn the consequences of procrastination if I'm staying on him. At the same time, letting go of the responsibility of homework does not mean that I let go of the parenting responsibilities. What I'm trying to say, I think, is that I'm in charge of certain consequences when/if things fall through. But I need to let the original responsibility fall on D.

In the grand scheme of things, this season of homework and grades is short. Let's be honest, how many of us remember all that we learned in school? Only if it's part of our job, right? The schools want a higher level because it makes them look good. I'm not saying they don't care about our kids, but, as in most things in life, it comes down to how it impacts them. D has to be who and what he is - which is a wonderful, well-rounded, young man. To be honest, for me, that's much more important than if he makes an A or a C. He'll go to college - maybe not Harvard, but that's not who he is, anyway. It's much more important to let him learn the hard way than for me to make sure he doesn't fail. That's one of the hardest parts of parenting - letting your children make mistakes. We naturally want the best for them, but sometimes it's better to let them learn the hard way than to always give them the best. job is to provide the guidelines for D. Then let go and let him work within those rules. If it fails, he will work his way back up. Isn't that what life is all about...learning from our mistakes. It won't be easy for me, but it will be best for D.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Don't Give Up...

Easy to do...give up. Lately I’ve had visions of just giving up—work, responsibilities, church. Death, illness, depression will do that to you, at least for just a little while. It will take the wind right out of your sails. Since my grandmother died about a week ago, I’ve wanted to do nothing but sit in front of the TV and watch re-runs of House and Chuck waiting for the new shows to start!

But we can’t just give up. God calls us to abundant living, to go, to make disciples, to teach, to love. To do...not to sit! I know, I know, we need a little relaxing, too. But not 24/7!

The writer of Hebrews encourages us, “Let us not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Heb. 10:25)

Today I encourage you not to give up...and in encouraging you, I'm encouraging myself. So, don’t give up meeting, don’t give up being creative, don’t give up on your dreams, don’t give up on your work, your home or your loved-ones. Because the Day is approaching. Encourage one another, pray for one another, love one another, forgive one another. Never give up!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What in the world?

Did you ever have one of those "What in the World?" kind of days? It can be a good WITW or not so good. Lately a not so good one has settled on me. It's like a grey cloud surrounds you...there's really no reason to be grey, you just are. As I was driving this morning, I asked God, "What in the world is the matter with me? Why do I feel blue for no apparent reason?" Of course, no answer came to me.

I think women are more prone to this than men - mainly because of hormones. You may never know why all of a sudden things just don't feel right. All you can do is work through it, and hope that you don't hurt some one's feelings in the process! Of course, chocolate usually least for a little while, until you remember how many calories are involved in that treatment! Another remedy is staying home and in bed with a good book or a lot of chick flicks. However, I'm not sure that would qualify as a sick day!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I randomly opened my Bible the other day to Zephaniah 2:3, "Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, you who do what he commands. Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the Lord's anger." NIV

Then I read it in the Amplified Bible, "Seek the Lord [inquire for Him, inquire of Him and require Him as the foremost necessity of your life]..." If I would just start each day that way - Ask for God's presence in my life, Ask for God's guidance throughout my life, and make HIM the most important thing every day of my life - wouldn't my day go much better? So many times the pressures of life get in the way, bring me down, make me feel out of control. Which is so funny, because I never had the control in the first place!

I wrote this verse down on an index card - the NIV version and the Amplified version on the other. My goal this week is to remember to "inquire for...inquire of...and require" God as most important in my life. Who knows what wonders we might see if we truly did this!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Faith is Now Sight

I guess Nanny is no longer humming, my guess is that she's singing! I prayed for Jesus to take her hand this morning, because the way she was living was not life, it was existing. I asked that if it was His will and His time, to just take her hand and bring her home to Him. About an hour and a half later, Mom called.

Her faith is now sight. 2 Corinthians 5 talks about our heavenly dwelling ... how we long to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling. Well, Chessie Maybelle Woodward Lee now has a new home with new clothes. Her failing earthly sight has now become new heavenly sight, and I would just love to hear her describe it! Her deafness is now reborn with sounds that I can hardly imagine! The hymns she was humming yesterday, I bet she's belting out today!

We live by faith and not by sight. (2 Cor. 5:7) But now she is home with the Lord, and she knows...she knows...SHE KNOWS!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


I know there's no marriage in Heaven. But I can't help but think this is what my grandfather is doing.

Humming Her Hymns

My grandmother is in the final stages of death. It's not a pretty sight when someone lingers from the effects of the body just wearing out. See, she's 93 and has been having some mini-strokes for several years. It had affected her memory - minuscule at first, but eventually to the point that the last time Drew and I visited, she didn't know who we were.

When Mom called on Monday evening to say that Nanny had deteriorated over the weekend, I knew the end was approaching. K and I went yesterday to more or less say goodbye...not really knowing how long she will hang on in this state. She has defied doctors predictions many times. See, she's a strong-willed woman.

Memories...I remember that strong woman as someone who expected you to do the right thing. Who expected you to act like a lady. Who wore a hat to church. Who taught the ladies in Sunday School. Who never gave you an option on Sunday mornings - you went to church. Who also enjoyed taking me to new places in South Carolina. Who would cook me French fries for breakfast. Who could smell up a home with a wonderful Sunday roast. Who came up during a time when there was little money and hard work. We would hang laundry out on the clothes line together. Who wasn't afraid of snakes, hornets or bees. Who tried to teach me not to show my fear. Who tried to put a little "country" into this "city" girl.

She will be missed. But this life she's living now is no life at all. Mom said this morning that she's humming her hymns. Now I call that a strong woman. When memory is gone, when this life is ebbing away, when all is said and done - we have our hymns. The hymns that connect us to our Jesus. Our HOPE, our COMFORT, our true LIFE. May God give me the grace to have at least a thimble-full of this woman's genes inside of me. For when all is said and done, I want to cling to Jesus.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


I'm dating myself, but I used to love the cartoon Underdog...before I really understood what an underdog is. I don't know about you, but unless I have a favorite team, I usually pull for the underdog in sporting competitions. Well, as I'm checking on football scores, I see that East Carolina is beating West Virginia today by 21 points after beating Virginia Tech last week. Who would have thought that? I was excited when Appalachian State beat Michigan last year.

Why do I feel this way? I really don't know why. Maybe it's because I have experienced being the underdog many times. When Drew first started playing baseball, believe you me, they were the underdogs. We had fun playing, but we hardly ever won.

I think we're all underdogs...ever since Adam and Eve made their choices in the garden. Looks to me like God pulls for the underdog, too. He even loves the underdog - us. He sent His Son to save us from ourselves. What wondrous love is this, oh my soul!

Friday, September 5, 2008

My Dream!

Why is it that the days I do very little cleaning, someone stops by unexpectedly? Of course, if you know me, I usually do very little cleaning! I've been struggling with sinus drainage this week and woke up this morning with a sinus headache. (It probably won't go away until a good night's sleep.) All this to say, I only hit the high spots today. On top of everything, we're redoing the garage so all that stuff has to go somewhere while the work is being done. Some's on the front porch, some's on the screened-in porch. Also located on the back porch are hunting clothes so they won't get the cooking smells on them. Then someone stops by! YIKES. Too late now! You have to like me for certainly won't be for my clean house!

Of course my fantasy is that when the garage is done, and the tools are back in there place, I'll be able to get a room back to organize some things. I hope to clean out and throw out all kinds of things, organize books and pictures, and cut back on clutter. I can always dream! But maybe this one will come true!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

This Just In!

This week I received my Siesta Fiesta Cookbook in the mail. HOW WONDERFUL! Holly did a GREAT job compiling all kinds of recipes, pictures, and quotes into one book. I haven't had a chance to look through the whole book, yet. However, I found several recipes I want to try out, and told my family "get ready" I'm about to cook something new! That can be good and bad.

Isn't it fun to try out a new recipe. There's something about trying something new - excitement, anticipation. As I get older, I think I miss that in life. For some reason, I get overly cautious (I'm not very adventurous anyway). I get stuck in the same old, same old, and life becomes boring. If I change something - even something small - life becomes a little more colorful.

This past week I've been able to slip outside in the mornings and sit under my beautiful Dogwood Tree. I noticed a leaf that was beginning to get a redish tint to it. Fall is coming! I love to watch the changes in "my" tree...from summer, to fall, to winter, to spring. Maybe we all need that at times - a small change. Get up earlier, stay up later, rearrange a piece of furniture, park somewhere different, try a new recipe. Who knows, it may be a keeper!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Today has really been a pretty good day, until the bad and the ugly set in. It always scares me when they say my football team is predicted to win. Well the game has started off bad and gotten U G L Y and fast. So I've resorted to crashing in the bedroom with no TV on and occasionally getting the bad news update from my son. I'll be glad when this one is over! K has already fallen asleep. Think I'll take my cue from him.

If something has to be U G L Y at least it's a football game - which in the scheme of things really doesn't matter. Don't tell that to 90% of the state of South Carolina, but it's the truth. How many times do we get all worked up over things that have no bearing on the true meaning of life? I don't mean just ball games, but things we worry about that never happen or having the best house, car, job?

Guess it's time to go back into the den and try to cheer up D. Yeah, he'll get ragged at school about it. But in the scheme of things - what does it matter? It all goes in a cycle anyway. What goes up must come down and down goes up, eventually. It's the waiting it out that's tough!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Hearing a Word

You've already heard about some of my frustrations with work lately. Well, let me tell you a blessing I get each week. I proof the scripture readings for each bulletin - just to make sure I didn't accidentally cut off a word, stop short on the scripture or copy the wrong readings. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I've heard God speak to me or my situation or my state of mind through the readings for that week.

This week was a tough word, but one that I think God was speaking in love. I also think it's a word that we can all benefit from at one time or another. So curl up those toes or pick up your feet, here it comes. "Therefore this is what the Lord says: 'If you repent, I will restore you that you may serve me; if you utter worthy, not worthless, words, you will be my spokesman. Let this people turn to you, but you must not turn to them.'" (Jeremiah 15:19) Did you catch it? Did you see my Word? I have been wondering if I've been hearing God's direction for a couple projects. proofing this scripture, I found my problem, "If you utter worthy, NOT WORTHLESS, words, you will be my spokesman." OUCH!!! That Word stepped all over my toes!

How many times a day do I utter worthless words? More often than I care to admit. You see, we know we are called to repent, but I think sometimes we're thinking we're called to repent of the really big sins - you know: stealing, cheating, betrayal, abuse, drug use. And then we think, I'm not doing the really big sins - so, I'm OK. When the truth is, no we're not - or at least I'm not.

How often have I stolen, cheated or betrayed someone because of a piece of gossip I've repeated...maybe not even gossip. Maybe I've given an opinon on something when I should have kept my mouth shut. Not that I don't have a right to have an opinion or to recognize when things are not right, but there's a proper way to handle it. God didn't tell Jeremiah to be silent, He told him to use worthy words, not worthless words.

God really did "knock me upside the head" with this one. I have too often used worthless words when I need to use worthy. I have used words that tear down instead of building up. There are times when I need to be silent, and there are times when I need to speak up. But when I do, I need to use worthy words.

I started that day trying to recognize and get rid of the worthless words, and that very day, I felt I heard a word from God about those projects I was telling you about. When God disciplines us, it is for our good. When we get a word from Him and begin to act on it, I believe he blesses us.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

How's Work?

In John 5:17, Jesus says to the Jews, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working."

My question for you this morning is: How's work going? Now any of y'all that may know me, know that mine has been trying lately. Can I get an AMEN from those of you that were at church this past Sunday! 'Nuf said!

The thing is right now my work is a little tedious. We're switching to new services and trying to keep all the settings, responses, liturgy in the right places is nerve racking to me - and to be honest, not my favorite thing to do. Yesterday, I felt God knock me up side the head - not literally - but I heard Him ask me why I had such an attitude when I was doing His work. Truly doing HIS work - helping to develop a tool that will make worshiping HIM more meaningful. How do we handle that? When we have to do something that's not really what we enjoy, but the result directly impacts the way others worship or think about God.

Even though I'm doing it with something directly related to organized worship, if we call ourselves Christian, don't we all impact the way others think about/worship God with our attitudes and work ethics? I think so. The thing is we don't readily recognize it. If we gossip, do others think, "Is that how Christians talk." If we get angry quickly, do they think, "Is that how Christians react?" If we curse, do others think, "Is that what they think about God's name?" If we complain about our jobs, do others think, "Do Christians think they're better than the rest of us?" Not a very powerful witness, is it?

What are we to do, then? The Apostle Paul gives us valuable advice in 1 Corinthians 15:58, "Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain." We need to give ourselves over to the Lord and His work - recognizing that what we do and say and how we react have an impact on others. And God sees our work..,it will not be in vain...especially when we are doing the work of the Lord...and isn't it all God's work, anyway?

Friday, August 22, 2008


With the beginning of school, we fall back into our "school routine," of course. It was so nice to get my Fridays back. Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE summertime and having the boys home. But...I also love going for my Friday morning walks, cleaning house (well, I don't love that, but I do like having time to clean), and having lunch with my girlfriends. I saw a friend at the gym today, and she felt the same way. She said she even got up early yesterday morning in anticipation of the day!

I woke up early today myself. It's taken me all day to wash clothes, but I did get the vacuuming and mopping done. But best of all I had girlfriend time. We had lunch together today for the first time in about a month, and it was so much fun. And then bestest of all is time with my hubby when I get home from lunch...time to chill and talk before D gets home from school.

There's a lot to be said for routine. Yep, I love my Fridays!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Where God Is

Today is the first day of school for our town which in the last month has experienced some tragic events...fatal vehicle accidents...fatal shooting...deaths of high school students. My most recent prayers to God have been centered around peace for these families, peace at our schools, peace in our community. I have asked God to provide a hedge of protection for our children as they begin a new school year, and today is the day. With tears in my eyes and fear in my heart, I am trying to believe and trust in my God who loves all of us.

In my morning devotions God led me to Exodus 20:19-24 with the main verse being the second half of verse 21: "And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was." Sometimes there are terrible dark times in our lives, but that doesn't mean God isn't with us. In this section of scripture, the people were too afraid to go near to God...they wanted Moses to do it. Think about how Moses may have felt. Every version of the text I read this morning said that God was in the thick darkness. How scary must that have been to be approaching someone with a voice like a trumpet, with lightening all around and the thick darkness.

In some ways I have felt like that lately. I know God is good, but life can throw us some AWFUL curves. He reminded me this morning, that He is with us in these terrible times. That when we have trouble seeing Him, sometimes He is right there in the thick darkness. Will I (we) have faith to trust Him? And I must trust Him. Part of this portion of scripture talks about how God was proving/testing the Israelites. I think that in the midst of difficult times, there can be a test to see will we trust God or not.

So this morning I choose to trust Him. I will pray ALL DAY for the safety of our children...I will draw near unto the thick darkness where God is...I will not wait for someone else to do it for me...with a trembling and trusting heart, I hope to prove to be faithful.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

One Week to Go!

Can you believe it? In only one week, school will be starting. Seems like summer just started. I do think D is ready. He's been helping with ROTC, and already has plans for next Friday afternoon with some school friends. I believe he's missed his buds. Summers are so busy any more, that you don't really get to hang out as much as you think you will.

You know, I think I'm about ready, too. Sometimes it's good to get back into a routine. But we will enjoy the next week ... a week of sleeping in...staying up late(r) general-laziness.

I'm also ready for a little more serious Bible study...more in-depth study...cooler drinking...porch stiting...Friday walks... I guess what I'm saying is that I love the change in seasons. Not only the changes in the weather, but sometimes the changes in our personal seasons. I'm ready to get out of this suggish season I seem to be in. I want a little more passion, more energy, but for the next last little bit of the season of laziness! LOL!

Monday, August 11, 2008


Life can change on a dime, the saying goes. And unfortunately, we all experience that at one time or another. Sometimes it's for the better, but not all the time. Tragedy strikes each of us at some time. We morn with each other, cry with each other and pray with each other. That's what community is all about. I saw this link recently on the All Access blog and was able to watch it today. It is an interview ABC did recently with Stephen Curtis Chapman and his family on the loss of his daughter, Maria. In the midst of tragedy it is a message of hope...hope that we will all need at some point in time.

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful." (Hebrews 10:23)

Friday, August 8, 2008


It's good to be home. This last week we've been vacationing at Cherry Grove, and it was WONDERFUL! The weather was great...the first time it rained was Thursday night. When we got up this morning it was overcast, which was good since it was time to head home.

If you couldn't tell, I only opened my laptop 1 time, and I couldn't keep the connection long enough to do anything. So I promptly packed it away and never touched it again until tonight. So I've been catching up with some of my fave blogs. Don't know if too many people stay tuned here, but thought I would touch base before I head to bed. I can't wait to sleep in my own bed.

As we finish our week, I always ask K & D what their favorite time was at the beach. One of my faves was just being on the beach. But another favorite is my morning routine of doing Bible study on the porch. I can see a little bit of the ocean between condos a block away on the beach. It's such a blessing to have coffee and Bible study and watch the ocean all at the same time. God's been speaking to my heart this week. I realized afresh this morning how much God has truly blessed much He has changed my heart and my life...and how much I still want Him to change. Even on the way home I goofed and realized how much more I need God to keep on changing me.

So as I celebrate a great, relaxing vacation, I also celebrate a great and awesome God who speaks if I will just listen...who changes hearts...and loves me as He heals me along the way.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

A Word - THE WORD!

Y'all!!! Such a powerful weekend in the Word of God. I can't even begin to express it. This morning Trav and the Team sang Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing which ended with a refrain on revival. I think this is what I needed - a revival of my soul. Summer tends to lead me towards some laziness. Revival --- I prayed for a word, and I was given THE WORD. The first point Beth made last night was Treasure the Wonder. Do you realize the wonder in our hands when we open the Bible? God equips us through His word. Don't take it for granted!

Speaking of wonder, my child is having a WONDERFUL day. He has spent time at home, with friends and with his girlfriend. Tonight, we'll share a meal together and then give him a final surprise gift! Tomorrow we head to the beach to enjoy our last summer outing before school begins. Can you say, time flies?!

I started the weekend with anticipation, and I have not been disappointed. I'm hanging on to that anticipation. God is good...all the time, and all the time...God is good. Yes, He is! Yes, He is! Yes, He is!

Friday, August 1, 2008

A Word

Remember that when you ask God for a word, He delivers a WORD! The very first thing I MUST mention from tonight's LPL simulcast is that to the right of me was a young mom with her newborn baby. In one arm her baby, and her other hand was lifted in praise to her God. An AWESOME sight.

Tonight's session of the simulcast was AWESOME! (I'm using that word a lot!) It started with Travis. He said things like,"Try Living, New Beginnings, Come to God, Surrender." All words that I've been hearing lately in one form or another. God had my attention. Beth is teaching on Luke 8:1-16, and I mean she is T-E-A-C-H-I-N-G. She is bringing a 100-fold word through a very familiar parable of the seed and the differnt soils and hearers. All to 70,000 people in 715 locations, every state except New Hampshire and several foreign countries representing 23 denominations. AWESOME!

I have heard God speaking - through Beth, to my heart, through worship & praise. Did I mention that Trav and the praise band are AWESOME?! One time tonight Beth said that we need to have anticipation of the word. I have had anticipation all day! Is God speaking or what?

I can't wait for tomorrow's session. I'm sure it will be - you've got it - AWESOME!



I am so EXCITED! The day has progressed very well since I last blogged. I called and got Pelicans ticket so we can see Tom Glavine pitch. YES! I called i-tunes, and it was a simple procedure to re-authorize my computer (since we had to replace the mother board). YES! But most of all, I talked to my baby. He was so excited. He was glad to be coming home, but had an absolute blast at camp. He has tons of stories to tell us. YES! YES! YES! The only slightly aggravating thing is all the decisions we have to make about our small remodeling project that seems to be growing! Oh, well. I might see if I can catch a few z's before we pick Drew up. But I think I'm too pumped to sleep.....


I woke up this morning with a spirit of anticipation for several reasons. Then I went to purchase a song on i-tunes and an issue came up that just made me blow my top. (Satan was right there cheering me on, too.) I'm still hot. Can't even call them because they're on Pacific Time. I had to go face down on the floor for some patience and perspective. Whew! I am slowly coming back to my spirit of anticipation.

The first reason I'm excited is that by BABY (15 though he is) will be coming home from camp today. Can't wait to see him. If you haven't guessed, he really doesn't go to that many camps. In fact when he was younger camp was a four-letter word to him. Well, it technically is a four-letter word, but you know what I mean. Then he went to Campfirmation last year at Lutheridge and had a GREAT time. His counsellor, Herb, made all the difference. This year, he went to Pisgah for ROTC Camp through CHS. The only time we heard from him, he was having a blast.

The second reason I'm excited is that this weekend is the Living Proof Live Simulcast. I can't wait to get a word from God. I am anticipating this like crazy. I was hoping to go to Deeper Still in Atlanta, but the calendar would not cooperate. So this is my only (so far) event of this kind this year. I totally expect a mountain top experience.

The third reason for my anticipation is Drew's 15th birthday tomorrow. Even though he technically has his b/day present, we have a few surprises. Hope he likes them!

Fourth, we are heading to the beach on Sunday for our last summer adventure before school starts. We usually go somewhere around Drew's birthday, and this year it's a bonus week at the beach. A lot of times we'll go to Charleston, but not this year. We will miss that trip, though. First summer we haven't been to the Holy City in years. But we have always had a relaxing fun time at Cherry Grove. Drew's taking a friend, and last night as I was watching the Braves game I heard where Glavine is pitching for the Pelicans on Monday night as he progresses off the DL list. WE ARE THERE! Yes!

So you see the many reasons for my excitement. In fact I went to bed anticipating today. And then i-tunes happened. I think the devil was anticipating this little ploy to spoil my excitement. Have to put things in perspective - what's 83 songs! 83 that I can't play on my i-pod all of a sudden. Don't get me started again! I'll call this afternoon and get it all straightened out. And if not, what difference does it make in the grand scheme of things? Not a hill-of-beans! Except that they're some of my FAVORITE songs....there I go again!

OK, OK...Let me bring an end to this double-minded post. Don't let Satan steal your joy, excitement and anticipation. We all need a little perspective on things sometime. I have reclaimed my anticipation. Can't wait to see my baby. Can't wait till tonight's session from Beth. Can't wait for another word tomorrow morning. Can't wait for a birthday celebration. Can't wait for the beach. When things are going good, and you have every reason to rejoice, don't let the aggravations of life get in the way. Hang on to your excitement. Don't let go!

Thursday, July 31, 2008


It is so difficult to believe that my BABY will be 15 on Saturday! Where has the time gone? To say it flies is an understatement...I think it's on warp speed! Hours may seem to linger, but days, weeks and months fly by. Do you ever wonder what you've done that truly makes a difference? Has your life been worth it? Have you wasted time? (Who hasn't?!) These are the thoughts of those leaning towards a mid-life crisis. No, I don't think I'm having one - in fact, I'm probably past the age of that. But at various times in our lives we do wonder what we are doing that really makes a difference.

I love the story of Elijah told in 1 Kings 18-19. Yesterday I read of Elijah's victory over the prophets of Baal and today I read of his fear, no outright terror, of Jezebel! How quickly our mountain top experiences can turn into a valley of uncertainty! I think Elijah is the ultimate "drama king." He goes from taunting the prophets of Baal to wanting to die in less than 30 verses! By the time we get to 1 Kings 19, he is worn out, and I wonder if he feels like nothing he does makes a difference. After all, he defeated the prophets, but nothing seemed to change - Jezebel was still up to her old tricks.

At the end of that section of the story we see that God had it all under control. He had a plan for Ahab and Jezebel, for Elijah and for the nation of Israel. When we feel like our time has been for nothing, we need to remember that God's still working in and through us. Maybe we can't see where we've made a difference, but God can. In our everyday living, God is working. As we raise our children, God is working; as we develop our relationships, God is working; as we serve on committees, God is working; as we clean our houses, serve in the community, run our errands, God is working.

If we allow God to work in and through us, even though time flies, we are making a difference, in the lives of our children, in the lives of those we love, in our community and in our jobs.

So this year, we will again measure Drew on the door frame, who is now at least as tall as his dad if not taller. We will celebrate with gifts and a special meal. We will hold on to these time continues to fly.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The God who Provides

Sorry I haven't blogged in a while. Can't believe it's been a week since my last post. We've been busy with some projects at home, and getting Drew ready for camp. He left out on Sunday and will return on Friday; his birthday is Saturday; and we leave for a week at the beach on Sunday! Can you say overwhelmed! We're working on a little remodeling at home as well as picking up birthday presents and trying to figure out how to fit in the Little Mountain Reunion and Drew's birthday!

This morning in my quiet time, I read 1 Kings 17. What struck me about this chapter on Elijah was the different ways God provided for him. He ordered the ravens to feed Elijah at the brook. Then when the brook dried up, God sent Elijah to a starving widow in Zarephath. Out of her emptiness, God provided for both Elijah and the woman and her family. Then when the widow loses her son, God, through Elijah, performed a miracle. And all of these to the glory and praise of God.

I'm also doing the No Other Gods study by Kelly Minter. In the session I did last night, Kelly discussed how God provided for Abraham - a ram in the place of Isaac. She noted that even though Abraham thought God was going to do it a different way, He still was Jehovah-Jireh - the God who provides. Are you going through difficult times? Are you looking for God to provide in a specific way, and can't see it? Maybe He is providing in a totally different way than you think.

See from my 1 Kings 17 reading this morning, I think God provides for us in many different ways - through nature, through others and through miracles. What amazes me, is that through the destitute widow, God provided. She would never have dreamed that by sharing what little she had with a stranger, Elijah, that God would bring her back from the brink of death - "She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah." (1 Kings 17:15-16)

In all these rambling words, I want you to see Jehovah-Jireh today. When your life is helter skelter, He provides. When you feel empty, He provides. When you feel on the brink of dying - maybe not literally, but emotionally or spiritually, He provides. Maybe not the way you think...maybe not in the way you're looking for...maybe through nature, maybe through others who seemingly have nothing to offer you, maybe through a miracle. "The Lord is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. The Lord upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you given them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing." (Psalm 145:13b-16) What more do you need?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Anybody out there feeling lukewarm? About anything? About everything? Seems like lately I can't get excited about too much. This afternoon I was thinking that I need to get out of this funk. Everyday is a day to rejoice over something. But it just seems that the UGH of the details of life are getting in my head. You know the UGHs - when you try to get something done at work but no matter what you do, you can't make it do right. I have this on-going battle with the folding machine, and it wins EVERY time. Sometimes you try to help someone, and it comes out ALL wrong. They're aggravated you "got in their business." Or even though you tried to make the words come out right, they didn't. Now you've got fences to mend. Or you ask questions that really have no hidden motive, you're just curious, and now they are overly cautious when they speak to you.

No, not all of this has happened today (except for the folding machine!) or this week or even this month. But, you look back and wonder - did I make a miss-step here or there? What happens to me is that I begin to back away - away from the curiosity, from the extra effort, from the conversation, from the folding machine! (I wish!)

Anyway, I'm not sure of the answer today - except that God is. He is whatever you need at any time...all the time. I found this on the All Access blog. Check it out. And just remember that HE IS your King of Kings! And there's NOTHING lukewarm about that!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer

Do we have any of those lazy, hazy days of summer any more? Ours seem to be more like the crazy! This week, however, may be a little more laid-back, at least for Drew. He can sleep in, spend time with his buds and catch up on summer reading. In a way I wish summer was slower-paced like I imagine it used to be...back in the day. But I notice, that when things get slower-paced, I tend to skimp on my quiet time. With school out, I have the opportunity to sleep later, and I do.

I feel disconnected lately - from God. I know He's still right here with me, but I'm not taking the opportunities to connect with Him. Instead, I'm sleeping in and ignoring a necessity of life - spiritual life. I realized this disconnect yesterday and last night made a pledge to get up at 5:30. Well, I had good intentions, but fell back to sleep after I cut the alarm off, but did manage to get up by 6:00. And I had time to pray, read, get outside for some reflection time. It makes a big difference. Now if I can just keep it up....

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Reflections on Being an Only Child

After I delivered my son to his job today...first job...babysitting, I thought about life as an only child. I consider myself an only child. My parents divorced when I was in my early 20s and promptly remarried. At which point I gained step/half sisters. (All age-differing excuses aside, I am a TERRIBLE sister.) At any rate, when I was younger, I used to say that I would NEVER have an only child. For some reason I thought it was a difficult load to bear. (What did I know!) Well never say never. After battling infertility for 10 years, along came a miracle baby boy, and no more.

I think the thing that worried me about only children was the fact that there was little opportunity to develop social skills. You have to remember that back in the day when I was an only, my mom didn't work - stayed home with me until I was in middle school. Needless to say, my social skills were lacking and developed very late. At times, I still feel like I don't socialize well. But that's not the problem today. I HAD to go back to work, and Drew went to the sitter's with his cousin and other children and promptly developed (what I think anyway) are great social skills.

However, I do notice one thing where we are alike...we both like our quiet time. When I went to the filming of the Bible study the Patriarchs, I spent a week with three wonderful friends. However, by about the second or third day I was missing my quiet time...really alone time. My dear, dear friend Katie recognized it right away. And now I am recognizing it in my child. Make no mistake he loves to socialize. I just notice that he also loves his quiet time, time to chill, time to relax with his family and time to just be.

Maybe being an only child isn't so bad after all.....

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The BEST Story

I heard the best story this morning. I had WNOK on the radio as I drove to work, and they were talking about the Home Run Derby that was held last night. (Can you believe that my family - BASEBALL JUNKIES that we are, missed it.) Well, they were talking about this player by the name of Josh Hamilton and telling his story. Evidently, he was a great prospect back in the day until he hit the DL list and found drugs. Thus started years of a downward spiral until he hit rock bottom. However, when he hit the bottom, God was there waiting on him. The story is a miraculous where God picks Josh up and brushes him off and puts him back in baseball, where last night he hit 28 home runs in the first round. The story brings tears to my eyes. He now says that he wouldn't change a thing about his past. God uses it everyday to help someone else. He professes it to be a God thing! I've linked a couple of the write-ups here. When you have time, read it. God is truly amazing when we surrender to His will.

Josh's point? There's always hope with God. Fight the devil, because Jesus is there fighting with you and for you! To quote Josh, "Alone, I couldn't win this battle. With Jesus, I couldn't lose." Amen

Thursday, July 10, 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like...

No, not Christmas...Vacation Bible School! This is one of the wonders of working in a church. You get to see the transformation from "normal" Sunday school rooms to vacation bible school rooms! Our theme this year is the rain forest, and our leaders have done an excellent job beginning the decorating process. Vines adorn our hand rails, the jungle hangs down from the ceiling, and animals are hanging from trees! How exciting!

Every year I wonder how we can take the magic and excitement of VBS and make it carry through to our "normal" activities. Why is it that one week a year we laugh, play, learn and experience wonderful adventures in God's word? Is it because a lot of people work hard to pull it off? Is it because we only seem to be creative that one time a year? Is it because we only have energy for that one week?!!! I guess some of it is that we can't always stay on the mountain top, we have to come back to the valley and be "normal." Wish we didn't have to.

I recently listened to the song Everything by Lifehouse which was the focus of this year's youth Sunday skit. It's a wonderful song, and a line in it goes, "How can I stand here by You and not be moved by You?" I've been wondering that about myself this week. How can I have the Holy Spirit living inside of me and not be moved by Him? How can I become so accustomed to the notion that the power of the living God is inside me, beside me, behind me and ahead of me that I don't even notice? I want to become more aware of His presence and act accordingly. Just like with VBS, I want to recognize the rain forest of God's love all the time, not just one week a year. I don't want to be normal any more - I want to be different!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


I just saw an ad for the "perfect fleece for summer." Obviously they do not live anywhere below the Mason-Dixon line. Fleece and Summer are two words that just DO NOT belong together. Get real!

Not Cool!

My schedule is totally out of sync! K is home with D for a STAYCATION and I am here at work. NOT COOL!

Since my hubby is sleeping in, I am unable to pull this bag of bones out of bed for my normal routine. "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." So, needless to say, I am starting my day without my Quite Time. NOT COOL!

Not only that, but for the past two nights we have not gone to bed until after midnight. Now, if you know me, you know we're usually in bed by 10:30. We enjoyed our 4th of July weekend so much, that on Sunday we didn't want it to end and stayed up to see the 11:00 edition of House. We have just "found" this program, so even the reruns are new to us. Bedtime - 12:15 and up with only 6 1/2 hours of sleep - NOT COOL!

Last night, our Chapin All Star team played their first game. It was supposed to start at 8:00 but didn't start until 9:30. The game, a pitcher's dual, was over at 11:30. But, of course, you're so excited after the game, there's no way you can go home and go to sleep. So we watch the end of the Braves game from LA - and bedtime comes at 12:30. Six hours later it's time for the alarm clock to go off. NOT COOL!

So today, I am running on coffee and the giddys! I have got to get back on schedule somehow. My morning devotional time is precious to me...not only that, but I'm hoping to hear a word from God about a couple things, but how can I hear a word if I'm not in the WORD? It reminds me a little bit of last night's game. Clinton had a pitcher that was BRINGING IT! He struck out 12 batters. But you know what, we didn't stop battling. Every boy that walked up to that plate went up there with the desire to get on base, one way or the other! That's what I have to do. I have to have the DESIRE and PERSEVERANCE to find time for my morning time, one way or the other.

Oh yeah, our pitcher was "on", too. He also struck out 12 batters. And in the top of the 7th inning we got on one way and scored another way. We won by 1 run: 1-0. WAY COOL!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Wonderful Weekend!

I'm sitting here watching the Braves in the top of the 16th inning - that's right 16, five hours of baseball after a 2-hour rain delay. Don't you know they're tired! I've been reflecting back on what a nice weekend it's been. Friday we had a family barbecue and that evening went over to friends for fireworks. Saturday was a lazy day, and in between the laziness was some house cleaning.

Today it would have been VERY, VERY easy to sleep in. But K and I both woke up in time for church. (I think maybe God was nudging us.) I know that there's ALWAYS a blessing waiting for you at church - it may be in a hymn, a sermon, a choir anthem, or the greeting of a friend. However, the flesh is countering with the comforts of a Sunday morning bed...but not this time.

My blessing today was powerful to me. It's summer and it's 4th of July weekend, so as is normal, attendance was down. I noticed the same for the choir - we had 5. So I expected that our Music Director would play a piano solo. But came the familiar tune of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, and the choir began to sing - softly, VERY softly. Then I noticed that the congregation little by little joined in. I was so touched. The hymn was a favorite of all, so I know deep down they wanted to sing. But, to me it was a true picture of the church, the body of Christ, pulling together to get the job done, helping each other out. Tears came to my eyes, as I tried to sing along with this fav! I was truly blessed.

God is good...all the time!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Growing Pains

K just called to say that they are working on not only a railroad crossing but also a side street. So there is a reason for the congestion besides growth. WHEW!

OK...I have just checked a local TV station's website to see if there's a major accident on I-26, and I see nothing! But, see, I just knew there had to be some kind of problem...Chapin traffic is horrendous! I left at 11:25 - supposedly before the lunch crowd - to head to the post office and then meet a friend for lunch. Traffic was backed up EVERYWHERE! I couldn't believe it! Where were they coming from and where were they going to? What has happened to this sleepy, little town? I believe it is waking up - big time! The secret is out about our city, and it is growing and no longer sleepy.

Those who were born and raised in this area miss the sleepy town. Heck, I've only been here 25 years, and I miss it. Growing towns are good and bad. No longer do we know everybody - see my prior post! Yet, we like the conveniences of local doctors, good schools, new restaurants and shops, meeting new friends.

Sometimes growing (personally or as a town) is no fun. The carefreeness of life leaves us, and we experience jams. Even the smallest things aggravate us - we blow things out of proportion, and we long for the simpler life.

God is there for us through it all. As we grow physically, spiritually, relationally and even as a town, He will see us through the jams, aggravations and adjustments. He is our rest - Matthew 11:28-30.

May everyone have a safe, enjoyable and restful July 4th weekend. Thank you, Lord, for our country and the freedom we so often take for granted.

Never Underestimate...

I had a "moment" today. You know the kind, where you think you just might lose it and let someone have a piece of your mind. (Not that I have enough to start giving away, but...) I went to make a routine deposit at the bank, and that's when it happened. They didn't know me. I had a check signed by my husband and a deposit slip that, to their eye, did not go together. The lady came back and asked if the bank usually allowed me to make a deposit like this. Well, yes. Then she turned off the sound, and I could see three of them gathered around the check and deposit slip. That's when I felt it rising up in me. We have been customers for 20+ years. How dare they question my right to deposit my husband's check. I wasn't even getting any money back, for heaven's sake... I started thinking, I'll just change to xyz bank. They know me there. Then I did it, I said a small breath prayer. "Please, Lord, help me not to lose it with them. Help me to be loving in my response."

Another lady came back to the window and asked me to sign the check---which is when I told her we had been customers for 20 years. They explained it was routine when the names did not match up. I asked if I had given them the wrong deposit slip. Then I realized it. My husband goes by his middle name-the check is listed in his first name. When I explained this, they were overly apologetic. In the end, I thanked them for being so observant. In this day and age, you just never know who is doing what with your information. As I drove away, I thanked the Lord that I didn't lose it. They were just doing their job - and very well at that.

We all want to be known. You know what, we are not only known but we are heard. God knows our names, He knows who we are. He also hears us - hears our breath prayers, and sends us the self-control (and other types of the fruit of the Spirit) to keep our cool when we need to. Never underestimate the power of prayer, even in the small, irritating things in life. He hears and He knows and He answers.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

What's that Dish?

Game shows seem to be the in thing now on TV. Last night at my house, I played the "What's that Dish?" game. A little background, I was trying to be the "good" wife/mother last night. (I'm sure you don't have good wife/bad wife at your house, but we do at mine!) Anyway, instead of going to ball practice I decided to stay home and fix a meal for my boys. K wanted to try to start eating healthier with a salad, and Drew wanted his favorite dessert - which, needless to say, is NOT healthy. So, "Good Wife" goes to the grocery store and purchases items for both dishes. I come home and fix a fruit salad, green salad, fry chicken fingers (not healthy), and fix dessert. As I'm plundering through the fridge for baking items, I notice several, did I say SEVERAL, containers with something unrecognizable in them! As I pulled them out and opened them up - YUCK, YUCK, YUCK. One was so covered with green and white "stuff" that I could not even figure out what it was. Being "Good Wife" last night, I took it outside to the woods to throw it out. I beat the Tupperware container on the ground to get the contents out, the dish became recognizable. "Hmmm, strawberries!" I said. Can't remember the last time we had those! I'm not sure the Tupperware will be re-usable....

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Wondering... you ever wonder, "Where's the excitement?" I've wondered that about church lately. (Can you say that out-loud in print? Guess I just did.) Do you ever feel like you're missing something? It's right there, but you just can't reach it. I've been feeling that way lately. Maybe it's the fact that I did not get to Deeper Still for my on personal "revival." The worship & praise time at these events is just awesome. Maybe it's the fact that, with baseball, we've missed church on a regular basis. Maybe it's because we're on a sporadic schedule with Bible study. Maybe it's just me. As I was walking and listening to my i-pod, I heard Point of Grace sing Begin With Me. And I quietly heard the Spirit whisper to my heart, "It needs to begin with you." Ouch! Begin with me? I want it done for me! Isn't that the way we are? It's so much more fun to be the receiver of the Spirit than the giver of the Spirit. Begin with me. Hmmmmm.

So there you have the reason for the theme Be...gin. I need to be - be the love of Christ to others, be a servant to others, be...gin to tell of the excitement of the Good News. Beginning again. As Avalon sings, "It's a brand, new day." May I be a brand new creation of His. Be...ginning Again!

One of "Those" Days

Are you having one of "those" days? I think I am. It was a day my first cup of coffee was delayed because I had to take my osteoporosis medicine. I don't think I ever caught up on my "half-caff" allotment. And as I think about it now, I'm beginning to crave an afternoon fix! It's been quiet at work with everyone gone here and there. And it's a good day to go here and there because for a South Carolina July day, it's gorgeous outside! I'm doing a little bit of clock watching, wondering what to fix for dinner, mentally making a list of things that need to be done at home, and looking forward to the 4th of July weekend.

I regret we did not go to the Deeper Still event in Atlanta. I sure missed a great time of worship & praise with Travis & the team. So close and yet so far. But I'm loving keeping up with the news on LifeWay's new All Access blog. This will turn your day around! Looks like a large time was had by all.

So welcome to the new blog page for Susan B. I guess I felt today was a good day to reinvent it. To maybe take a different track. Learn some new tricks. And just who Christ has called me to open to something that new again!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Joy to the World

This morning in my walk I listened to Avalon's version of Joy to the World. It's one of my fav Christmas songs. When the 25th of the month would fall on a Sunday, a former pastor never lost the opportunity to tell our congregation how long it was until Christmas! So since today is the 30th----it's less than 7 months until Christmas! Can we find the joy in May just as easily as we see it in December?

A friend of mine's daughter is expecting her first child - and the due date is December 13. When I am around her, she is so excited, anticipating each coming moment, enjoying the current moments of planning, doctor's visits, and changes in her own body. As the body of Christ, we should be feeling that same anticipation and joy be it December or May. God comes to us everyday not just on Christmas. We can celebrate, look for, plan for, anticipate all those changes that come to us as we experience His presence. Yes, we have our trials. If you read St. Paul you will see the theme of joy in the midst of trials because he knew the Holy Spirit was with him -- Emmanuel --- God WITH us! That's worth celebrating every day!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Do ya think?

With summer fast approaching and time for reading at the beach, on the porch, etc., when an ad comes by me with books, I take time to peruse the selection. Well, I saw one today that just got me cranked up. It's called "Becoming Your Best - A Self-Help Guide for Thinking People." So now tell me, are you a "thinking person" or not? What is that supposed to mean? Only smart, intelligent people should read this book? Now, don't get me wrong - I have no idea what the book is about, and as they say, "You can't tell a book by its cover." It may be absolutely WONDERFUL, but the title just turned me off. It seems to be screaming "unworthy" for us common folk. No thank you. I think I'll just stick to my "mindless" books.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Heavy Hearts

Today was such a sad day with the news of the loss of Maria Chapman, youngest daughter of Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman. The circumstances surrounding that loss make the situation so much tougher. Prayers go out for the whole family... What else is there to say?

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Fun, Fun, Fun

That's what Bible study was tonight - fun---fun---fun! We had "Bad Hair Day" munchies, lots of talking and fellowship and God's Word. We talked about what to do when we have a bad hair day, when someone gives us a bad day, and when we are everybody else's bad hair day! :>) We all decided we needed a touch of Philippians - the book about J O Y even as Paul was being held a prisoner in Rome.

We all need a little about that joy. We need to learn to be content in all situations (Phil. 4:11-13); to rejoice (Phil. 4:4); not to be anxious but in all things pray with thanksgiving(Phil. 4:6); to do EVERYTHING without complaining (Phil. 2:14-16); to do NOTHING out of selfish humility. And of course the ONLY way we can do this is through God who works in us to will and act according to His good purpose (Phil. 2:13).

Yes, God was speaking to us tonight. We need humility, thankfulness, peace, contentment, grace. That will turn our Bad Hair Days into a Philippians Kind of Day! Praise Him!!!