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Archive for September, 2008

100

What does this number represent?  

*my age.  not quite.

*the age my aunt will be next August.  yes. wow, huh?!!

*the number of times I have missed my boys.  yes. and then thousands more.

*the temperature today.  NO!  (it’s lovely, finally!)

*how many hits my blog gets a day.  ha! um, no.

*how many children I wish I had.  sometimes.

*the amount of shoes I own.  not hardly.

*the miles it would take to get to my first and second born sons.  I wish.

*the number of students in my Sunday school class.  whew! no!

*what I weigh.  not gonna tell you that – are you kidding?!

*this blog entry!  yes!!!  Good guess!  Unbelievably, I have now posted 100 entries on this blog.  Interestingly, a short while ago, I seriously considered suspending my blog indefinitely.  yes, I did.  I am quite sure you would have lived a full, productive life without it.  pretty dern sure you wouldn’t have even missed it. I’m confident of that.  However, I didn’t (God continues to stretch me, and ask me to live outside my comfort zone), and now find that I have written way more than I ever planned.  100 x more.  I’ve learned: Never underestimate God’s movement in your life.  Never say never.  (that’s for sure).  And realize God’s goal is not that you remain in your comfort zone.  He does indeed ask us to leave that “safe place”, and to be vulnerable if only so you can serve Him more fervently.

I am so thankful I have been here – even if just for a short season.  I have some new dear friends, I probably wouldn’t have met and loved had it not been for this blog. I have learned more of the cost of serving Him.  I have risked my desire for privacy. And I’ve released my need to compare with others.  

So, thank you.  for stopping by, even if you have never commented.  Thank you for listening.  Thank you for considering pursuing God, or pursuing Him even harder than ever before.  That would be my ultimate goal – to know that each of you who have stopped by one time or another, have longed for a relationship with God.  And done something to make it happen.  To God be the glory, great things He has done.

I think this celebration calls for cake…….

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time to breathe, part 2

After my last post, just yesterday, imagine my joy in reading this devotional this morning from my God Calling……..

“Come unto me, all ye that labour (yes, that’s how they spell it in my book.  cool, huh?) and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28  (by the way, this is the verse I tucked in Sara’s lunch today….before I had read this……..)

Yes, come for rest.  But stay for rest, too.  Stop all feverish haste and be calm and untroubled.  Come unto Me, not only for petitions to be granted but for nearness to Me.  

Be sure of My Help, be conscious of My Presence, and wait until My Rest fills your soul.

Rest knows no fear.  Rest knows no want.  Rest is strong, sure.  The rest of soft glades and peacefully flowing rivers, of strong, immovable hills.  Rest, and all you need to gain this rest is to come to Me.  So come.

 

Good stuff.  So, I’m hearing a theme.  I think I will be listening to Him even more carefully now……..

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time to breathe

wow.  After a really crazy couple of weeks, things are beginning to settle just a bit.  School began again yesterday.  (today was see you at the pole – she left home at 6:30am!)  Actually today after my morning day-off workout (run, walk the dogs, bike ride), I actually sat under the trees (recently trimmed by our friend “Ike”) on my glider, and enjoyed the sunshine, and the Lord. I absolutely love love LOVE to get to take my time in the Word in the mornings!  Sometimes I am just so rushed………I’m going to work on that.

I began to study my Sunday school lesson, and just sat.  I watched the activities on the street (at the time, the debris truck was parked in front of my neighbor’s house – teasing us with the hope our tree trimmings would actually be picked up. They finally were, by mid afternoon.)  I prayed.  I saw a red bird.  seriously – it was completely red.  I sipped a refreshing diet coke, with crushed ice.  I breathed.   I smiled.  I chatted with my neighbor.  I read and studied some more.  nice.  really really nice.  

Then back to reality…….Errands absolutely must be a part of days off.  Usually.  And today was indeed usual.  That was mighty stressful, considering the traffic, heat, and traffic lights still not working.  It reminded me again to pray for those with so much more to deal with.  I find my day’s joy shadowed by the hopelessness many are experiencing at this season.  I wonder if you have experienced the same – guilt when your power comes on, but your neighbors doesn’t.  Or your good friend’s.  Guilt that your home is fine, while many are starting over.  completely.  Or perhaps you have guilt that your area of the country didn’t even experience a recent disaster.   Maybe even guilt over joy in your time with the Lord, under the trees, when others’ days are so stressed, and complicated…..

My early morning reading had been in Psalm 23.  He is restoring my soul. I will indeed rejoice in that. I will thank Him, and I certainly pray He is restoring others souls as well.  Only God can do it, folks.  Only God.  

Psalm 23:1-3

 “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures,  He leads me beside quiet waters,  He restores my soul….” 

Take time to breathe today.  And while you do, share that time with the only One Who can restore you.  May you find great joy in Him.

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home, sweet home!

There really is no place like home.  And what a joy and blessing to return to a home with no damage.  Sara and I returned home yesterday afternoon, and this morning have discovered the internet and phones finally work!  So I am able to report to you once again.  I praise God.  What a week – and I wonder, if my home was damaged, or worse, gone – would I still praise Him?  It’s what compels me to pray so fervently for all those still picking up the pieces.  

We got to meet for youth group at church last night, and the message was part of Romans 8 (18-28) and Romans 5:3-5. “We rejoice in our sufferings, becasue we know that suffering produces perserverance; perserverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not disappoint us because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.”  and from the Message, same passage…….. “There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit!”  

Oh, how I pray you will need to scramble to find enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into your lives today through the Holy Spirit!!!

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This is a lovely place.  I have a wonderful brother, and family, and am so very thankful for them.  Sara and I have had some fun, done some shopping, I’ve done my running in the hills, and we have enjoyed every second of electricity that Austin has to offer.  The weather has been so beautiful.  I got to go to church, and worship, study the Word, and feel welcomed.  

However, it is not home.  And I just miss my life.  Can I say that?  I miss the structure.  I miss work.  I miss my husband a lot (who stayed behind in Houston to work – with all kinds of obstacles).  I miss going to the mailbox.  The simple things.  But I’m choosing to find joy in the unexpected.

God has richly blessed – and I am constant in my thankfulness. I am so grateful.  I am also fervently praying for those who lost so much. There are so many with monumental needs. Mine are so trivial compared.  (We are still waiting for power to be restored in our area.)  I do not want this to sound like complaining.  seriously. It’s not.  I am aware, however, of how much a blessing it is to be able to just live my life.  So, today, enjoy the simplicities of living your life.  It is a gift.  I am thankful for His peace in the midst of uncertainty. I pray it for you, too.  Be blessed today, friend. 

John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

James 1:17
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

1 Timothy 6:8
“But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.”

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We survived! I am so grateful for your prayers.  for my God.  I am now in Austin at my brother’s house, thankful and so very tired.  Not much sleep at all, with the storm coming at night, and all.  It was the longest night ever.  Power went out about 2am, which surprised me it had stayed on as long as it had, seeing as how hard the wind had been blowing.  forever.  

We could hardly wait till dawn, so we could SEE something – it’s so hard to hear things, and have no idea what they are!  We surely have tree limbs all OVER our yard, branches, etc.  However, the house (new house!) did just great from what we could tell.  When I left, it was still raining, so full assessment will begin when the weather clears.  But we are so so thankful.  Truly, it could have been much worse.

As we drove through our neighborhood this morning, we could clearly see that we had been spared.  Many large trees totally down, fences gone, cars and houses hit by trees. Streets full of debris.  Truly we are thankful for your prayers.  I had prayer walked our property yesterday, begging God to spare us.  He did.  And from what I can tell, my friends are all in good shape too. Now we pray for those with much more to clean up, and for those who lost much.  Of course, restored power would also be a good prayer to pray for us.  Now, I am going in to see the “hurricane cake” my sister in law is baking!

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waiting

Glued to the tv.  Watching the wind in our trees. Already lots of wind.  Liking electricity.  I’ve realized I really really like electricity.  Praying.  Not a drop of rain yet.  Took a nap.  Ike grows.

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