Thursday, November 29, 2012

Are you dancing with joy?

At church right now, we are being challenged to deal with some hard issues. The pastor started teaching a series on "vampires: loving the people who suck the life out of you". The premise has been about God's desire for us to have an abundant life because that is why he came. The series so far has dealt with forgiving those who have "sucked the life out of you" through not being as loving as we feel they should be or uncontrolled anger. It has dealt with taking the habanero out of my honey. (The words I thought were sweet but burned the hearer.)

What to do?

"Perhaps the hardest part of being released from prison is knowing what to do with your freedom." 

I totally agree with this statement. I spent the last 29 years of my life being told how to view the world, the people in it, and what I couldn't do to show those around me Christ. I'm having to re-learn how to relate to those I encounter- my husband, my son, my fundamentalist family, my co-workers, and my fellow church attenders. People don't think like I was was raised to think. It feels like everything that wasn't permissible before is permissible now. How do you take freedom with moderation? I feel as if I take anything from my pre-grace life, I'll be wearing a neon-lettered sign stating where I've been.

I am finding fear and grace don't mix well. I've been afraid for so long. It has become a habit for me. How to I learn to trust, instead of being afraid of being hurt again? How do I relate to this awesomely terrifying God who wants the best for me but would condemn me for unrepentant sin? 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Bryce Wilkins

Here's looking at you kid...

Half the congregation at his funeral...
As I sit here in front of my computer, some 1,100 miles away a funeral is happening. I don't understand why this had to happen. It seems so senseless. I've got questions and very few answers.  You see early last Saturday morning my cousin couldn't take the pressures of this life anymore. He decided it was time to breathe his last breath. I'm angry at myself for not knowing him better and for not reaching out to him. I'm angry at him for not calling (to my knowledge) anyone in the family. I may not have been as much apart of his life as I should have, but if had just called I would've opened my home to him no questions asked. That what family does. They help out when someone is in need.

Now I'm supposed to go put a date in our family ancestry records. I don't want to. Here is what I have to post in

Friday, October 12, 2012

I never understood

I've heard the phrase, works based faith, for years. I have no idea what that phrase means. People claim you can't be saved by your works. I think that is hooey. The bible has countless examples of act done by individuals who went above and beyond, which made them whole. Ninety percent of the major or minor characters, I can think of who's story is told in the Good Book, did something to save someone or save themselves through faith.

  • Moses plead with God for his chosen people. It changed God's mind and SAVED the children of Israel from destruction.
  • Noah built an ark.
  • Easter left her family to go be pampered and save her people.
  • David killed Goliath, married the king's daughter, became bros with the Prince, ran for his life, worshipped a lot, etc.
  • Abraham got down and dirty with his his good ol' girl.
  • Samuel answered the call of God.
  • Hannah dedicated her son to the Lord and gave him back for service to him.
  • Prophets prophesied.
  • Mary and Joseph obeyed.
  • John ate bugs and honey. He preached.
  • The fisherman left their nets.
  • Good ol' Zach, the wee lil' man, climbed a tree, ate with a rabbi, and paid people back.
  • That woman touched Jesus' hemmed robe.
  • The sad daddy found Jesus for his daughter.
  • The nice guy on the other side of Jesus being crucified opened his mouth.
  • Jesus' friends wrote some words down, so we could know their friend.
These were all acts based on faith. Faith that salvation would come to those who believed it could happen for themselves and others. We are save through faith AND works. One without the other is like the ocean without salt. If you find it, you aren't at the ocean. Do work.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

New Employment

I got a new job! I thrilled about it. I'll be working weekend evenings for a grocery store photo/media department. I've handed in my two weeks notice for my former job. I will be done there on the 21 of October! Can we say WOOT WOOT!?!?

Today I got a sitter for my son and my friend's son to go fill out new hire paperwork and hear about store policies, etc. There comes a time in the new hire paperwork I dread. Every. Single. Time. It's the part where they ask you three different ways what your racial background is. It really isn't any of their business as long as I come to work on time, do my best work, and leave customers as satisfied as possible. It bothers me to think there is someone somewhere could be tallying how many women/men are employed for their company and of what racial origin they descend from. I imagine someone sitting behind a desk in some cubicle saying we have x-number of Hispanic women and y-number of African American men. We have met our quota and shouldn't hire anyone else to throw off the balance.

Why is it that I can't just be American? Why do I have to be Caucasian or of something decent? I was born and raised on American soil. My ancestors have been born and raised here for a couple centuries. That would make me of American descent! I love it if you were born on foreign soil and moved here! Claim your heritage. Celebrate it! I won't discourage you from claiming you are Hispanic American or African American or Russian American, if that is the case. This is such a pet peeve of mine to have to not put on every survey for employment or other things AMERICAN! American is, has been and always will be a melting pot of cultures and beliefs. It has made us who we are. It is why I dig the thought of places like New York and Los Angeles! You have Chinatown sitting a few streets over from Little Italy. What is not to love about that? American has many problems, but it runs in my blood next to the oxygen. I'm not claiming that we are the greatest nation either. I just want my hertiage to be recognized. And dare I say it, celebrated!?!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Nobody told me...

This morning we woke up earlier than usual. I was checking my facebook. I found this blog from a website I discovered before Dylan was born. It was/is a place to talk to other parents about... well everything related to prenatal care, to caring for children, and relationships with your (for some in-)significant other. This morning's blog made me laugh and appreciate parenting. Here it is, if you are interested. These moms were dishing about the things nobody told them about raising a toddler. I think my favorite was about brand new carpet and a toddler getting into some paint...

Here is my list of things nobody told me about parenting (or perhaps I've been told only to forget):

Baby signing time characters

  • My life would revolve around someone else's daily pillow time, bathing, bowels and belly.
  • I would become a preschool teacher. (...and love it!)
  • The flushing of the toilet could provide hours of entertainment if allowed.
  • I could be nice at 2am, oh... 3am, oh my... 4am, oh-you-take-him-am.
  • By encouraging bilinguality, dancing and music, I'd be listening to countless hours of Yo Gabba Gabba, Baby Signing time and other assortments of kids shows/music.
  • I'd wake up in the middle of the night with the music from the above shows playing on repeat in my head.
Yo Gabba Gabba Characters
  • I'd come to love half-words/sentences like og (dog), ca (car), ish-is (fishes), ake-up (wake-up), dat ca top (that car stopped), I do ood (I do good) and cho-cho.
  • Brushing teeth is a fun activity.
  • I would watch things on TV and relate it all to my child's future or present. I have a hard time watching the news, movies about soldiers/criminals, etc.
  • Holidays are more fun with a child/ern.
  • Every scribble with a crayon is a brilliant work of art.
  • Sidewalk chalk is easier to get off walls than acrylic paint.
  • Hair brushes make great spoons for stirring toilet water.
  • Toilet paper floats in the sink.
  • My son would be better with technology (phones, tablets, Iphones, cameras, dishwashers, etc.) than me who grew up with computers.
  • I would become a Jungle gym to climb up, on, or over whenever I moved.
  • Hearing music with babbled words would be just as sweet of the sound of laughter and restful breathing.
  • I would go to the store or gas station or pretty much anywhere without my sweet kiddo and feel like I was on vacation.
Some cute kid with a dog.
  • Everything from eating, cooking, cleaning, getting coats on, to putting my own socks on would take about 15-30 minutes longer.
  • Dogs would be cause for giggles and be one of the most interesting topics ever.
  • I would argue with my son over who gets to vacuum, sweep, and use the steam mop.
  • I would feel truly helpless when my son is sick and even more so when I am sick.
  • I would have a kid who loves tomatoes and onions, but wouldn't like most red meat, eggs or cheese.
  • Apparently texture in food is everything!
  • I'm an engineer-rocket-scientist-president-astrologist-billionaire-driver-maid to my kid. Who knew?
This is just a few out of many things, but I'm sure you get the idea. Have a good day!

Monday, September 17, 2012

What to write?

I've been wanting to write something on here for a couple days. I've been doing a lot of in depth reading on different scriptures. I'd considered writing about them, but not every tool in the tool box will create the result you desire. A hammer is best used for pounding nails into wood. You get the idea.

I've been toying with the idea of studying what the word glory means. I've heard the word a billion times or more. We fling the word around. Do we truly know what it means?

The house is going up fast. Andy's job is going well. MOPS starts again tomorrow after a summer hiatus. Thanks to some friends, Dylan and I get to go. Church is great. Trying to get my daycare licensing requirements list squared away. I want as much as I can finished before our house is done, so that can be up and running as soon as we are settled. Blah Blah Blah....

Monday, September 10, 2012


Last night before I went to sleep, I prayed for God to show me what was necessary to get to Him. I prayed for him to show me how to get rid of the un-necessary things. I prayed for fear to be alleviated. I feel this urgency to figure things out. I've been worried about my extended family's words and reactions to my decisions. I've also been trying to create income from thin air.

I don't know how much stock I put in dreams. I don't usually remember mine. I was surprised when I woke this morning to find I knew what I dreamed. It may or may not be significant. I decided to write it down anyway.

There was a woman in my dream. I h ave no idea of she was tall or short blonde or brunette. She was young-ish. She was quite pregnant, like last trimester pregnant. (By the way, I am not.) There was no sense of urgency in her movements. She was walking down a long  paved road. You know like the ones in the desert. She didn't seem worried about anything. She was just strolling along. I remember a few other figures appearing along this lady's walk, but they vanished like a vapor. Their words were dust in the wind. I then woke up.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Seven years and Carpe Diem

September 3rd, 2005
 From back then until now, I've never stopped loving you. We've seen difficult times as our love was tested. Those time have made the good times even sweeter. I wouldn't trade you ever. From now until now is then,
 "I promise to give you the best of myself
and to ask of you no more than you can give.

I promise to respect you as your own person
and to realize that your interests, desires and needs
are no less important than my own. 

I promise to share with you my time and my attention
and to bring joy, strength and imagination to our relationship.

I promise to keep myself open to you, 
to let you see through the window of my world into my innermost
fears and feelings, secrets and dreams. 

I promise to grow along with you,
to be willing to face changes in order to keep our relationship
alive and exciting.

I promise to love you in good times and bad,
with all I have to give and all I feel inside in the only way I know how.
Completely and forever." -Dorothy R. Colgan
October 2011

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The time has come...

The time has come for me to wake up from this sleep.
I wasn't born to be a sheep.
I was meant to be a lion in this lamb-type world.
I will speak out.
No longer will I keep with the sheep.
Life tastes to good to follow blindly those who think they know best.
I am a lion.
I savor life with hopeful abandon.
I run with the wind.
I know who I am in this lamb-kind of world.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Exterior look

On June 15th, Andy and I started the process to have a house built. We decided to build with Allen Edwin an experienced builder in our area. We choose a floor plan we liked. We signed a bunch of paperwork that agreed to the materials that were to be used, agreed to the floor plan/exterior look of the house and papers giving us ownership of the plot of land we were going to build on. We handed over our earnest money.
Finished basement
Main floor

Second floor

Our land
The selections we made for our house: the cabinets, bathroom
 counter tops,the kitchen back splash. counters and linoleum
On July 17th, we went to pick out our interior/exterior colors, tile, appliances, counter tops, and carpet. On the 19th, we signed papers finalizing our selections for the above things, gave permission for permits to be pulled on our land, and paid our first property taxes. We were told then to expect a phone call telling us a date of completion and a foundation being poured within the next 45 business days.

July 31st
On July 31, my older sister, who lives down the street, text me saying they had staked out the property lines. We worked on our loan stuff and waited to hear from the builders. We knew they'd put a sold sign up before everything really started. On August 13, My nephew said he thought he'd seen little flags around our property. He wasn't certain though. You can imagine my surprise when I got the text with the following picture today!
August 15th- Its for real!

For whom did God create all the beautiful stuff???

A lovely lady I met recently posted this in a group I joined. I don't think I could have said it better! It is with her permission, I post this.
"Sinners! If you believe some religious leaders, only sinners are to enjoy the beauty of God's creation.
Take gold, silver and precious stones, they are only for the most sinful among us. Sure they are beautiful. Sure they can give pleasure in viewing their beauty. Sure God did indeed create them; nothing man has created can compare to the beauty of God's creations. But did He really intend that only those headed for hell may enjoy the beauty He created? Should christians wear only ugly, plain stuff? I refuse to believe this. It is as wrong headed as the statement that money is the root of all evil --it is the LOVE of money, not the money itself. If your jewelry becomes your god, then yes it may become a sin but so can your car, your home, anything that you allow to come between you and God can become a sin but very, very few things in life are in and of themselves a sin. Denying ourselves any beauty is more likely to cause a lustful, coveteous spirit than one of joyful servitude.

What about the beach. Did God create that only for the pleasure of the sinful? If we cannot go where people are not decently clothed, then stay out of the mall, the park, amusement parks, even the grocery store Again, I refuse to believe this; all of God's creation was made for our pleasure as we are made for His pleasure. The ocean has a very beautiful, awesome, calming effect on most people. In fact, all of God's creation engenders a spirit of awe, pleasure, reverence, joy when one takes the time to truly enjoy.

There are so many [religions] forbid their adherents to enjoy with the stated premise that doing so would be sin and lead to a backslidden condition. I believe that on the contrary, forbidding people to enjoy what God intended them to enjoy leads to frustration, anger, hurt, envy and eventually sin and pulling away from a God who is as seen as unfair, uncaring, unloving. 

A heart full of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, meekness,etc. would have no place for anger, bitterness, envy, strife, etc. and the beauty around that individual is simply life's pleasures provided by a loving God. These things of beauty are not God's consolation prize for sinners - but rather God's gift to all, given freely as a part of His creation plan."

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Toughie, the MOPS kid...

Change creates stress even in the best of circumstances! It's no surprise, with all my conversation with my present and future self, I am feeling the effects of it all. The following email mirrored my heart at the moment I needed to "hear" it. I thought I'd share.

by Alexandra Kuykendall, mom of four

“My name is Toughie” 3-year old Gracie insisted from her car seat.

“No. What’s your REAL name?” her older sister pushed back.

“Toughie!” Stubborn, as her new nickname insinuated, Gracie wasn’t going to back down.

One morning a few days earlier, our family activity was a mile and a half hike through the woods to a lake. Our two older girls walked, ran and jumped over tree stumps in the path while the younger two rode on their parents’ backs.  We didn’t get far before stubborn Gracelynn decided she wanted to be like her older sisters and, as she said, “hite.” With her own two feet.

Out of Derek’s backpack, she ran to catch up with the older set. Her toe caught on a tree root protruding in the trail and she fell on her hands and knees.

"Her father told her who she was
and she not only believed it,
she had become it."

“Come on Toughie,” Derek said as he picked her up, “that’s part of hiking.”

She looked up at him and I could almost see her internal processing. If I want to hike, and I do, then I need to put up with the falls. And there were more falls. Four more if you count them by the scrapes that were left on her knees. At every fall we called her Toughie and cheered her on and every time she bounced back up proving she was up to the name. Absorbing her new persona. She WAS Toughie.

“But what if on the first day of preschool she’ll tell kids her name is Toughie?” her older two sisters worried in the car days later.

Gracelynn’s ears perked up. Preschool? She could carry her Toughie image there too? I again could tell the internal wheels were turning.

Her father told her who she was and she not only believed it, she had become it. I pray this will always be true. “It's in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for”. –Ephesians 1:11

Lord, help me to hear who YOU say I am. I want to absorb it and become it.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Its about a conversion into Grace People!

You may not like it. I didn't ask your permission because I do not need it. My appearance doesn't make me holy. Its the attitudes of my heart. When we our heart attitudes are where they should be, "God’s Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled. There is no law against behaving in any of these ways." (Galatians 5:22 &23 CEV)

Growing up UPC from day one has given me strength and taught me things I wouldn't have otherwise, however it also got me picked on in school. I was often pushed in the hallways, pointed at, and whispered about the girl with the really long hair/skirt who got to go into special tutoring classes. I wasn't allowed to be evolved in things I could have been good at because I couldn't wear a skirt doing it. I often felt ostracized from everyone else. My mom would always say being different was the point and we were supposed to be separate from the world. My friends didn't often invite me to their birthday parties because I was always at church. I feel like I missed out on having solid relationships with those who didn't attend the UPC. I had a friend, Hope, hand make me a necklace back in 5th grade (I still have it), She was so excited to give it to me. I opened the little box. Thanked her kindly but explained I could never wear it due to church rules. Her facial expression still haunts me sometimes when I see that necklace. I hurt my friend by not using her gift as it was intended. Or the time I wore make-up for a school play. I really liked it so much it scared me. I haven't worn any since.

With that said, I wish I were brave enough to go style my hair. I really despise being afraid of people's reactions good or bad. I've told people for over ten years I struggle with all this appearance stuff. I'd asked for advice from people I respect/ed in the UPC (United Pentecostal Church) for the entire time about hair, make-up, and jewelry. I received lots of well thought out replies. It was/has boiled down to how separate do I wanna be/stay? Does my "being separate" keep me from love, joy, peace, kindness, etc that could come my way? God and his grace are enough to save me and my little family. He doesn't want to harm us.

What's my point? Things are changing for me. One day in the future, I may not have long uncut hair, not wear jewelry or be make-up-less. That doesn't mean I've forgotten God. It doesn't mean I don't remember the bible or the preaching or all-night prayer meetings. I still feel God's presence often and am challenged by it. My goal is that my heart behaviors match the fruits of the spirit where ever they lead me. Modesty will still be a priority for me.

So if I look like this.
Or like this. Remember your words can leave scars.
 Be wise with them.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

You will be known by your fruit

Anyone who has lived for more than a few years knows what an important thing a reputation is. There are so many bits of wisdom we use to make this blatant. Sayings like: "Your reputation precedes you" or "Make a good first impression" or "Your first impression is a lasting impression". We say these things in warning. It is the hope this wisdom is heeded to, so when our reputations are presented to us they show us the kind of person we think we are.

God has an incredible reputation! The  bible says in 1 John 4:8, "God is love." Love is described in 1 Corinthians 13, "Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous, boastful or proud. Love is not rude,  it is not selfish, it doesn't keep record of wrong doings. It doesn't take pleasure when others grovel, it takes ecstasy in the flowering of truth. Love puts up with anything. Love never gives up. It always looks for the best and never looks back, but keeps going until the end." This is the type of character we should aspire too.

The past week has been an emotional roller coaster. My extended family is in town. These are the people who have supported me through much of my life. While I'm coming into a change of view points, I still respect them for their strong spiritual convictions and am a touch jealous about their certainty. I have tried very hard to not bring up my church attendance knowing most of my family wouldn't be pleased. Some of them have been understanding and others reacted as I expected. The result is exhaustion. I have 2 more days...

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Truly mind-blowing...

There is a God. He is enough. I think we limit God by trying to define him as one, two, three or 8205479. He is infinite, so why try to box him up? He cares about us and is curious about how/when we will respond to Him. His promises are true and don't come back empty once He has made them. He wants us to live in HESED.

1. is unmerited compassion toward one another.
2. creates an “echo” effect of God's true nature toward us and our response back to him.
3. Hesed cannot stay stagnate. It requires action. Its so contagious. It has to grow in you. 
4. It cannot exist without community. This seed of all things good wants to be spread to others.
5. Hesed is something you do, not something you say.

This concept has me so excited. I feel like I'm buzzing. I start thinking of scripture. Hesed is God's character. Its tangible. AHHH! Words are not enough to get this across! It is totally cool and now I'm going to bed. Good night!

Thursday, June 14, 2012


Many of the people I know are not going to like this. I don't expect them to. Here it is: we are going to an Assemblies of God church. I need to spiritually heal, before I can be a help to anyone. I am working at searching scripture to reconcile things I see there with things I've been taught. It is better for me to go somewhere than no where. I know you feel strongly about what it is you believe. I respect you for it. Please pray blessings of wisdom, understanding and healing on us through this journey. I know God has this in his hands:

God has knows the names of these little guys.
Fairyfly is the smallest insect/animal in the world. It can fit through the head of a needle.

He also has us, so worry for nothing...

Sunday, May 20, 2012

The roots run deep

Today I woke up thinking about everything that has happened over the last few weeks. I had made promises to go to the home missions church here in town. I really didn't want to go. My hubby had a side job to do today. I went. The people there were so happy to see us. We went to eat after church and the pastor picked up the tab for us all and we chatted as I was headed out the door. He told me he doesn't play with church politics. They didn't own me. He give me the choice to go somewhere else without hard feelings, if we weren't finding what we need here. What a relief!

Tonight I went out to my back yard. Its planting time here in Southwestern Michigan. I wanted to clean up the maple tree seed pods and loosen up the ground to plant some pretty flowers. I think I got more than I bargained for. I raked up most of the pods. As I was breaking up the dirt, I found these roots just under the surface. It occurred to me we are all connected like these roots. The more I dug I realized most of the root systems belonged to my neighbor's bush and a bush whose top had been chopped off.

I started to get a different sort of picture. Bitterness is like a bush with the top cut off. If not dealt with properly, roots continue to grow just under the surface. Dig that life sucking force from your heart, so good things in your life can grow. I want you to have the simple joy of watching beauty flower in all aspects of your existence! Happy gardening...

Monday, May 14, 2012


Some of the longest walks you will ever take are the ones in which you know change is on the other end. I've taken several of these in my 29 years: the walk to the alter to declare my faith, the walk into school my Senior year knowing my parents would most likely never sleep in the same room again, the walk at graduation, the walk to tell my mom I was moving to Michigan, the walk down the aisle toward my soon-to-be husband, the walk I took once the pregnancy test was positive, and the one when I climbed in the car with my newborn son. These and a few more I don't care to share were pivotal moments in my life.

Two Sundays ago, I made the journey into my pastor's office. I knew he wouldn't like what I had to say. I've attend this church for the past eight years. I've come to a crossroads. Do I put my big girl unders on and walk away from hurt, frustration, and change? Or do I stay and turn a blind eye to the things that didn't want to stop staring me in the face? I walked into his office resolved to make changes. After a few words, tears and apologies had been made, I walked out broken not wanting to talk to anyone.

Fast forward to Mother's day. I spent the day with my family feeling relieved not having to answer to anyone but God. It was a freeing to know I'm loved by my husband and son. I worked outside pulling out the weeds (both literal and emotional) and singing old hymns. I put mulch down to protect the good ground and felt good. I have a sick rose bush. I will nurse it back to health, as I work on my self. By being nature, I can see life in action through the words of the Savior from Matthew 13:

“A farmer went out to sow seed. 4 While he was scattering the seed, some of it fell by the road. The birds came and ate all that seed. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where there was not enough dirt. It grew very fast there, because the soil was not deep. 6 But when the sun rose, it burned the plants. The plants died because they did not have deep roots. 7 Some other seed fell among thorny weeds. The weeds grew and stopped the good plants from growing. 8 But some of the seed fell on good ground. There it grew and made grain. Some plants made 100 times more grain, some 60 times more, and some 30 times more. 9 You people who hear me, listen!” 

I don't know what the future holds. I am just fine with that. One thing is for sure, life is way to short for you to allow people to treat you poorly no matter where that is. I make no promises to where my next church home will be, until then I will attend a home missions church here in town. I will talk to anyone I like about this situation because we are all sinners. Nobody is perfect. If God can use a donkey, I can hear him speak through anyone who makes themselves a vessel.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Pinterest and 2 candles

For you Pinterest people, you know what I'm about to say is beyond true. For those who don't know what Pinterest is, it is an online bulletin board where you can pin pictures of things you find attractive. Most people on Pinterest pin pictures of food, crafting items, dream house ideas, good quotes, clothing, etc. It is so addicting to my inner visual artist! I did find this on there the other day and thought to share it in honor of my son's second birthday today. It is perfect.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


If you read my last blog post, you may be able to tell I'm rather hurt and angry at my current church situation. One minute I'm spitting bullets trying to fix the world. The next minute I am feeling guilty for not being the bigger person in private. The most overwhelming feeling I have is a numb dull ache toward all things God. I hear scripture or someone talk about the goodness of the Lord. I mentally go to to the door of my heart, shut the door, and lock up tight. Hurting sucks. I want to be free again, but only in a spiritually hospital. They can help bandage me up, give me the proper meds, and let me be on my way again. There are moments these days when the door is ajar. I attempt to let a little peace squeeze through to my heart.

As a Deer pants after water, so my soul longs after you.

This brought tears to my eyes tonight:

Trust His Heart
All things work for our good
Though sometimes we can't
See how they could
Struggles that break our hearts in two
Sometimes blind us to the truth
Our Father knows what's best for us
His ways are not our own
So when your pathway grows dim
And you just can't see him,
Remember He's still on the throne


God is too wise to be mistaken
God is too good to be unkind
So when you don't understand
When don't see his plan
When you can't trace his hand
Trust His Heart

He sees the master plan
He holds the future in his hand,
Don't live as those who have no hope,
While our hope is found in him.
We see the present clearly
But he sees the first and last
And like a tapestry He's weaving you and me,
To someday be just like him


He alone is faithful and true
He alone knows what is best for you


When you can't trace his hand
When you don't see his plan
When you don't understand
Trust His Heart

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tiny Chairs and Aesop's Fables

Dylan at Cracker Barrel in June of 2011 sitting in a kid's rocking chair.

I was picking up my son's room this morning. I found a book of Aesop's fables I was given back in grade school sometime. I sat down on the edge of this kid's sized green rocking chair. I was taking back to the smell of my old classroom- recycled air, books and chalk. My little self had even see the wisdom back then. I saw I had written in my childish scrolling "Yes" or "No" for each fable which stood out to me. Twenty some odd years have past, since that time. I've move several times picking away and unpacking the wisdom found in this little book's pages.

Today sitting in that tiny chair, I wanted to amen Aesop. Church attendance and attempting to live a Christian way of life have been a Cornerstone for my life. I find myself  feeling a bit stuck and tired these days with some of the things I see happening in church congregations across the board. We have forgotten what it is to be the hands and feet of Christ. We have forgotten the widows and orphans. It is too often we turn a blind eye to the pain surrounding us in the local and international communities. We take up offerings and tithes for buildings we can't afford. We talk about growth while forgetting about prayer, friendship, and fellowship. Families are left in the wake of ministry and good ideas. Our children are forgotten while we are so busy with stuff. Children ARE to be the focus when they come into our lives. They aren't to be a nuisance. I don't always see the people who preach practicing the things they speak about. It is incredibly frustrating.

I talk to myself in this too because I am guilty. I am the church. I need to be the change I want to see with a good attitude. I get this. Attitude affects perception. While I am responsible for my actions, I'd like to see others be better too. I want to find the best in people. I'm been searching for a place to attend services in hopes I find things done better. While reading dear ol' Aesop, I came across this:

The Boy who Swam in the River
One warm spring day, a boy was walking along the bank of a river. The water looked so inviting he took his clothes off and dived in. The river current was very strong, and soon the boy was in danger of drowning. Just then a traveler came by. He saw the boy struggling and began to scold him for going swimming in the river so early in the season. 
"Oh, sir!" cried the boy, "pray help me now then scold me later. At a time like this, advice without action is useless."
I spoke to me strongly. I hoping for more from believers. I want believers who go back to the basics of Christianity. Lord, help me find it!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I Lift My Hands

The Robe
The Robe
By Lloyd C. Douglas
The Casey Anthony case, the anniversary of my dear baby cousin, Samson's birth, and the predictably of the nightly bad news have gotten me down. Humans never learn! We beat our heads against a wall with the excuse we are just trying or we are just human. These excuses give us a reason not to step back from the wall we've banged our heads on to look at the million of other holes from previous generations. We could learn from them.

I recall one humble, blameless, not-so-stupid human who taught and lives the message. He lived in a time when it was popular to pit two men against each other for the mere sport of seeing someone die or bleed for the amusement of large betting crowds. This man lived in a time of massive debt and the taxing of the poor to pay the deficient back. The important men of the that time were corrupt and didn't care about the consequences of their actions. They would go to war for the expansion of their own power/influence. Materialism, sensualism, and self-gratification were advertised as the greatest desires of all humans. It was a time of great advances in technology. Trade between countries was

A birdie parable

Well folks, I'm having a hard time falling asleep thanks to good ol' daylight savings time. I hop this is to your benefit.

My older sister Karly, me and our younger sister,
Destiny at field day or something.
When I first started school, my family lived in a two bedroom town home about ten minutes from the elementary school. My mom had just had my little sister. She had her hands full taking care of my siblings and a in home daycare. Every morning my older sister and I would get ready for school to the sound of toddlers arriving at our house. My mom would feed us a quick breakfast. My older sister would place me on her handle bars and ride her bike to school. It was so much fun for me. The wind in my hair I'd watch the houses and a soccer field speed past. (I'm not so sure my older sister, Karly, felt the same way.) One day the neighbor boy was walking through the soccer field. He heard some thing above him. He looked up and SPLAT! Some seagull poo landed on his forehead. Whenever I see a seagull now, I think of our poor neighbor cleaning poo off his face.

“A farmer went out to sow seed. 4 While he was scattering the seed, some of it fell by the road. The birds came and ate all that seed. 5Other seed fell on rocky ground, where there was not enough dirt. It grew very fast there, because the soil was not deep. 6 But when the sun rose, it burned the plants. The plants died because they did not have deep roots. 7 Some other seed fell among thorny weeds. The weeds grew and stopped the good plants from growing. 8 But some of the seed fell on good ground. There it grew and made grain. Some plants made 100 times more grain, some 60 times more, and some 30 times more. 9 You people who hear me, listen!” 

On Sunday, our pastor preached about the parable of the sower from Matthew 13 (For the rest of the story...). He was discussing the importance of having our hearts prepared for the Lord and how each seed the sower planted had great potential. While his teaching is/was valid, I find this passage of scripture slightly comical. I've heard so many preachers put the different types of soil in a negative tone. I sat there thinking about our neighbor boy and my teacher later that day talking about how seeds are spread. Seeds come in various forms. Some fly before they find a resting place to germinate. Other seeds fall from trees, using their rotting casings to protect them, until they find a safe place to grow. (This is how wild orchards are made.) Sometime birds will eat the seeds. The birds will expel them. The seed will (if it doesn't land on your car or the neighbor boy's face) use the poo as fertilizer to grow.

The entire parable is a testament to the mercy of the Lord. We are all seeds with grand potential. We all come to grow in Christ different ways. Sometimes we need to experience being eaten by the birdies to realize for ourselves we are more than poo. You notice in the allegory above the bird seed didn't "burn up" or "get choked out"? I'd like to think bird fodder became a vineyard or an orchard. The seed was given time to understand it's possibilities with the Lord's help. If you feel you are in a bird's belly and are about to feel like poo, God still see the potency in you.

Monday, January 2, 2012

I resolve...

I received this in my email today. While I don't get the greatest grades (I do try), I can say I get this concept.

My New Year’s Resolution
By Heidi Rogers, mom of two

I am what most people would classify as a perfectionist. Type A. A goody-goody. You know, good grades, hard worker, natural-born leader…all that jazz. When it comes to life, I’ve done things “right.” I set my goals and I accomplish them.
But when it comes to mothering, all that flies out the window. I want to be patient during tantrums in the middle of aisle 12 and during colic at 3 a.m., but I find myself feeling guilty for snapping at the whining and crying over the crying. I forget to change diapers. I give up easily in the battle over vegetables. I want to scream when sleep and naps don’t take place. And sometimes I do scream.

"Striving for perfection
and mothering
just don’t mix."

I have never been more humbled than I am as a mother. Striving for perfection and mothering just don’t mix. As appealing as it seems to have it all together and react calmly to every hiccup I encounter, I’ve found I learn more from mistakes and seeking forgiveness. My New Year’s resolution for 2012? No more resolving. Instead, I choose to sit in the place God has placed me, and let Him shape me into the mom I could never be on my own.

Dear God, thank you for not expecting me to be the perfect mother. Show me how to step back from striving and let you transform me instead. Amen.