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Archive for December, 2008

5 minutes

I have 5 minutes to say hi – hi!  Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year to you!  I pray that your celebration was wonderful, as we gathered with friends and family to rejoice over our  Christ.  We enjoyed two different Christmas Eve services, and loved welcoming Christmas in such a special place of worship.  Our time together has been wonderful – full, joyful, and satisfying.  The only thing missing was my firstborn.  sad. Yet he spent Christmas skiing, and is ice climbing today, so he’s definitely happy.

Friends came by today (with two little ones) and we loved seeing them.We head to Austin in a bit for a short visit with the favorite aunt – she’s 99 years old!  Tomorrow is another extended family gathering, so the fun continues.  

That’s all the time I have, but just remember even in the midst of all the busyness and frenzy, that Christ is life.  Seriously, all we need is Christ.I’m so thankful for that.  Enjoy Him today. blessings!

p.s. I forgot to mention, the movie Marley and Me – great movie, fun Christmas memory with my girl, but here’s the thing, take KLEENEX if you go – seriously, took me by surprise.  If you’ve ever loved a dog, you will cry.  I promise.

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Jack

There are people who enter our lives, and make sure we are never the same.  ever.  Certainly, those with Christ in their lives are more likely to impact for good, I think.  Long long ago, as a mom with three little boys (way before my girl came to be) I made a deliberate decision that if I was going to be at the grocery store nearly ever day, with those hungry hungry boys, then I would make friends there.  I never wanted it to be like I had heard…..”I hate having to go to the store.”  I wanted it to be more like…..”I GET to go to the store”.  My Randalls store became one of my “mission fields” and I would pray for my people there, as well as deliberately love on them.  I still do.

It worked.  I had/have still many friends from those years of almost daily food shopping.  My neighborhood store had many who were there for years, and I actively shared my love of God with many of them.  Directly sometimes, and indirectly others.  Still praying for one in particular to come to know Christ.  I still have several that I send Christmas cards to, and still keep in touch with.  I’ve gone to visit some who have moved to other locations.  

So, that all said, imagine my shock and grief just a few days ago, when one of my sacker friends came down the baking aisle to tell me of the death of my dear Jack.  I nearly burst into tears right then and there.  Jack.  Jack was a dear retired man, who came in the mornings to sack our groceries.  He had done it for 17 years. 17 years that I was shopping there.  We shared a love of Christ, and a lot of life during those  moments of walking out to the car, with various children at various stages.  He gave Sara her first Barbie doll for a birthday gift one year.  He always had a joke for me, and always propped his arm on the cart as he shared stories with me. He loved me and my family when I was struggling through a particularly difficult family relationship.  That was so healing for me.  I’m just not sure how to explain it all to you, but he was such a dear man to me.

I missed his funeral.  I found out two weeks after his passing.  That made me even sadder.  I did contact his family, and express my sadness and my prayers for them.  His wife preceded him to heaven, just within the last year.  I guess I don’t exactly know what to do about it now.  I don’t exactly feel closure.  His Christmas card is addressed, and left on my counter.  His number is still in my cell phone.  He had not worked in the last few years, but we had talked on the phone, and I had just seen him a couple months ago.  Nearly hugged him to pieces when I saw him!  

Not sure exactly why I wrote about it, except that it reminds me how fleeting this life is.  That we are called to love others.  To be relational, in the name of Christ.  Though I’m not sure if I affected his life, I know for sure he did mine.  I wish I could tell him that, just one more time.  Maybe this would be a good time to tell those in our lives how much we love them.  Maybe that’s exactly what this season should be about –  to ponder and share the love that made  Christ come as a baby, so long ago……

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taking it personally

My goodness, has it been a busy season!  I’m sure I am not the only one who feels that way.  I’d love to tell you all about it, but am rushing out the door.  I just wanted to stop by and ask you if you take God’s gifts personally?

Two days ago, I ran my morning run in a tank top and capris.  It was an oppressive 75 degrees, and 200% humidity.  (a tad exaggerated!) Yesterday, it ***SNOWED***!  Truly a miracle.  Truly a gift from the very Creator God who had the idea of snow in the first place!  We do not live in an area that is used to that kind of weather – but, boy do we delight in it when we get it every 10 years or so!  I happened to be at the office even though it was typically a day to work at home for me, and got to experience that snowy time with my most favorite people outside my family – my co-workers.  I’m so glad.  You would have thought we were children in a playground!  Our glee was beyond measure – we wholeheartedly delighted in the gift from God!!!  We saw it as a sign of God’s favor to us.  We have been working hard on this particular event, and because the enemy had been breathing down all our necks in recent days, we took the unexpected, unpredictable snow as a gift from God. We took it personally.  That He truly was going to do a new thing – a precious thing. One that would glorify Him.  We truly received it directly from Him – as a most precious gift. And boy, did we thank Him.  over and over again.  loudly.  

Maybe you did not get snow.  But you did get the sun rising on you this morning.  You did see stars the last clear night.  You are breathing.  You are loved.  By a wonderful, majestic God, Who decided to snow on some South Texas ladies yesterday.  And make them giddy with delight.  So, receive His gift.  Take it personally – that beautiful sunset, that majestic mountain range, the Word He gives you in the middle of a dark night.  He loves you.  deeply.  Receive it.

2 Corinthians 9:15

“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!”

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a grateful life

Whew!  What a joy to sit, quietly, in one of my favorite places, and reflect with you a bit of these last few days and weeks.  With my newly updated ipod playing in my ears, I am full of praise, peace, and great joy today.  Oh, how I hope and pray you are too!!!

As profound as times long awaited can be, often they are not fully appreciated due to our time restraints. Our schedules. So, this morning I want to stop, in a seriously very busy day, stop.  Ponder.  Revel in God’s goodness.  Give glory to Him for all answered prayers.  Proclaim Him, and claim Him as mine.  again.  Marvel at His goodness, faithfulness, my gosh, His faithfulness!!!  It overwhelms me.  Doesn’t it?!!!

I LOVED everything about my holidays with my beloved people!!! Ohmygosh, how I love them!  How I love having all of them home!  At the same time!  I loved cooking 24/7.  I loved the mess. (well, now that must be a God-thing!  I’m pretty opposed to messes on my own!)  I loved the full house.  I loved the laughter.  I loved meeting and getting to know someone very special to one of my favorite people.  I loved how tired I was every night when I fell into bed.  I loved the times I had with God in the midst of the busyness.  I loved the peace He planted here in the midst of the noise. I loved reflecting on all my precious Christ has done in the lives of these people I love so much.  I loved that He continues to show me His plan, His presence, and His faithfulness to this family.  My precious little corner of the world.  My heart could not be more grateful to Him.

Read this from the Message……. 

Matthew 8:3
“Jesus reached out and touched him, saying, “I want to. Be clean.” Then and there, all signs of the leprosy were gone. Jesus said, “Don’t talk about this all over town. Just quietly present your healed body to the priest, along with the appropriate expressions of thanks to God. Your cleansed and grateful life, not your words, will bear witness to what I have done.”

I want to bear witness to what He has done with my cleansed, grateful life.  Truly, that’s all I want to do.  As the holidays bear down upon us, with all their responsibilities, and duties, I just want to bear witness to my God, and all that He’s done for me.  in me.  I express my thanks to Him, with such a grateful heart.  May my life reflect that.  today.  always.  Yours too.  Now, go live out that grateful life………

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