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Monthly Archives: June 2011

Did you know you’re a superhero?

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IT has been said that our enemy seeks to get us one of two ways…
Either through
Distraction
or
Discouragement.
He knows he can’t have our soul but he sure can keep us tied up.
Either through our ultra busy schedules or his accusations that keep us bound by guilt, shame,or humiliation.
The accuser is nasty and he comes at times when we may least expect him.
Like after a victory or a great accomplishment.
Maybe it’s after a time of intense intimacy with Jesus.

He sneaks in to the party uninvited and starts to whisper in your ear.
“Who do you think you are? You aren’t anything. If everyone knew that you messed up yesterday they would recognize that you really have nothing to bring to this party”.
He keeps us low and discouraged.
He makes us feel insecure and fearful.
Because he knows if we really knew the kind of power God has given us we would tear him to shreds.
So the coward makes us believe we are the coward.
“Don’t say anything….Only perfect people are allowed to talk. Sit in the corner and feel miserable about your lack of perfectness.” Yes he knows that will keep us ineffective.
“Feel sorry for yourself…that will make you feel better”. Oh he loves to make us the victim.
“You deserve to hold that grudge….they need to pay for the way they behaved”. This one is a sure poison eating like a worm at our soul.
“Don’t you dare confess that sin… if people know that about you they will stone you behind your back.” He LOVES it when we keep sin hidden.
“You’re just not as good as…” Oh my! He likes to tempt us to compare ourselves with others!
The accuser attacks us because he is Scared of us!
Why?
Because
He saw.
He still sees.
Not our power and smartness but the power of Jesus.
And that is EXACTLY what he doesn’t want us to use.
Jesus gave us grace by giving us what we didn’t deserve.
And he also gave us power.
Like a superhero!!
The power that raised Jesus from the dead is in the life of every true believer!
It’s the power to crucify the flesh when we are tempted to walk in it.
It’s the power to confess our sins when we fail.
It’s the power to forgive as we have been forgiven.
It’s the power to live life, however hard our circumstances may seem, with a peaceful presence.
It’s the power to move mountains.
It’s the power to stand strong in persecution.
It’s the power to be humble and broken.
And it’s the power to tell the nasty old accuser to hit the road!!
If you find yourself in this place today. Know that you are not alone.
I too, face the father of lies…he is on my doorstep waiting to get his foot in.
…Cause I just kicked him out… yesterday…again.
And I know that I will battle him until the day I am safe in the arms of the one who saved me from him.

And for today?
I am so very grateful for God’s daily sufficient Grace!

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Crazy Days…

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I’m playing catch up… Because my book is in progress and I want this to be included.
So…
This is what has happened over the past weeks.
Life has been happening way fast and I am frankly dizzy, and tired and a little worn out tonight.
I feel like my eyes have sprung a leak and I’m hoping it will be fixed by morning.
Sometimes good sleep can fix the leakiest of hearts.
But right now I’m gonna think back to these moments that I don’t wont to forget.

Sophia has had a busy end to the school year. Including several field trips, one to a ballgame, that never happened, because of a thunderstorm. 😦 Daddy and her got some bonding time on the school bus at least. And then she played softball for the second year. She is mighty cute in her little pants and shirt but I will have to post a picture of that later. She also had her end of year dance recital. She will be going into 3rd grade next year! Slow down little one! I can’t let you grow too quickly!

A girl and her daddy. What's sweeter than that?

Sophie's dance school/2011

 

My sweet ballerina

Proud of our little princess

I love that little one!
Our Friends, Conrad and Leslie, from Alabama took the time to stop by for an overnighter. We loved having them and their family. What a sweet treat in June!

The Weber's

With the end of school Freshman turned into sophomore. And a very scary thing has happened. Most incidents of her passage make me cringe and hold my breath a bit…I am slow to participate in “what everyone else my age is doing”….I just think kids grow up so fast. But this one I can hold off no longer…She is officially allowed to drive. I feel most awful because usually by the time it happens I come around and I’m ready to celebrate the new thing…but this time I am just in total denial. I cannot tell you how cranked up my stomach is from this earth shattering event. Not that she can’t or won’t do a great job. She will do fabulous. It just rocks my world to have her driving me around.
I DO NOT FEEL THAT OLD!!
But here are a couple of other things she has been up to…
Summer Volleyball league.

And Starlights end of the year concerts.

I think my sophomore is beautiful inside and out! I feel blessed to be her mom!
My eyes are starting to water again…

But one look at these faces and I smile.
They are full of mischief, these two. I don’t know how in the world my mother in law raised 7 boys if they were anything like my two. Full of ornrie’s!

But these two also have brought tears of joy to my eyes in the past 6 weeks. Jalen won an award for showing sportsmanship and leadership on his tennis team. I was overjoyed for him!
And Micah had some very nice words from his teacher about his inclusion and compassion for some extra special kids in the class this year. I cannot tell you how those words ministered to this mama.
Both boys have made it through the year with wonderful report cards and character lessons. I feel fortunate to be growing up in the same house with them.

I love this kid!

I will miss Mr Micah and my chats in the van on the way to school. We had about 5-10 minutes every day just he and I. It was one of my most cherished times in the day. This year He is moving up to middle school. And once again… My tears fall. Transitions. All the time. I was not prepared for so many.
Baseball is the word on the street for these two. Jalen’s season has ended but Micah will be playing for another month or so.

And Jalen…
He will be 14 in just two short months!An 8th grader!What a young man! I love to hear him call “Good Morning” in his cheerful deep voice in the morning. I also love that he is very willing to kiss me and that even though he doesn’t toss around a compliment easily last week as we were riding alone in the van he looked at me and told me he thought I was pretty! Awhhh! He makes me melt like buttah when he talks like that!

I love this kid too!

And Father’s day came last week. Right after camp and before Bible School and Swim lessons.
I am grateful that these kids get to have a dad who loves them so much.


And me?
Well… I’m the taxi and the grocery retriever and chore giver and listening ear and hair advice giver, and dishes and laundry captain. I am exactly where I want to be. And although sometimes I’m grouchy and moody I am so thankful to be your mom! I count it an honor that I have been given such a task!

I think you guys are worth the tears.
And I think one day I will look back on these crazy days and I will wish for just one back.
I love you my Sweet ones!
I hope one day you will understand how much!

Calling all Nobodies

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You know what I think?
I think most of us have something inside that cheers for the underdog.

I mean really who cares if a famous person has a child that grows up and becomes famous? We expect that. A king’s son is the one who will take the throne. A famous singer will have a child with the name behind him and what do ya know…they too get the spotlight and record deals.
But what about an average, hard-working person who has no background, no money, no power… when over night they become a success we cheer and all talk about how exciting this is.
It’s all over the news.
Who doesn’t like a cinderella story?
My favorite movies and books almost without exception take a nobody and turn them into a somebody.

The stories I read in the Bible that hold that kind of fascination for me are David and Esther. Average people like Moses and Abraham. Women like Ruth and Mary. It’s the disciples that he called…. Matthew and Mark, Peter and John.
Nobodies.
Not people of royal birth… just people like you and I.
And yet he called them to do great things. And we still talk about them today.

Jason and I were at a pastors conference in Texas a couple of years back. It was a small conference of about 50 – 75 couples but there were some “big” name speakers at the conference. People like Howard Hendricks and the president of Moody, Michael Easley.
We had dinner one evening seated at a table with 2 other couples. One pastor and his wife were from a church in Dallas.They were very nice but quite soon after we started getting acquainted I made a discovery. This was a young man who had high aspiration of climbing the church rank and status ladder. He wanted to know what church we were from and how many attended. After realizing we couldn’t do much for his aspirations I felt his attentions were no longer on our conversation as he started looking over our heads like he was straining to see the “big dogs”. He appeared to be looking for the somebody in the room. People that could make his own dreams come true.

I think God strains to look for the nobodies in the room.
Without exception he personally calls each of us to follow him. Both People of royal and pauper positions.
But when Jesus walked the earth it was people like Peter, the fisherman,  who he called by name.
And the children were the ones he held and said we must be like. He didn’t tell us to try to be like the important teachers but the little children.
The nobodies.
The powerless.

People who find no self-esteem from our name, position, wealth or rank.

Rather people who find their esteem only in knowing him.
I think that’s why he called David, the shepherd boy, and claimed he had a heart like his Father’s.
David did not see himself as mighty king and so try to make it happen. He saw himself as the shepherd who cared for his father’s flock. Routing out the lions and bears. Keeping the little flock safe.
I believe that’s why God esteemed him.
Because he did not esteem himself.

And in the process God took that little boy and made him king.
Turning his name from a nobody into a somebody.

God always does that.
If we let him.
He takes average normal( and sometimes abnormal :p ) people and makes them royal.
Royalty.
If you esteem him he esteems you as royalty.
Oh my.
That is some kind of story.
I think it’s the kind that should make the front page.
You are his and that makes you on the most amazing list of somebodies you’ll ever find.
We don’t have to look for it.
He’s already got that covered.
Instead accept it

 and spread the news that he’s looking for more nobodies to add to His wedding feast!

Weekend reflections

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I had several inspirations this weekend.
One was a book I read… ” Heaven is for real”. It’s a true story of a little boy who seems to have encountered a heavenly experience. What was especially touching to me was his description of Jesus. He repeated numerous times how much Jesus loves us. His eyes are full of kindness. He loves us so much.
I don’t know about you but when I think of good motivation I am much more inclined to be motivated by a God who loves me then a God who watches to make sure I never mess up.
When I think of a Jesus who is overflowing with love for me it causes me to NOT want to hurt him. And it also makes me want to spend time with him. Who doesn’t want to be with someone who loves them fully? And accepts us for who we are?
But when I think of a rules and condemnation Jesus I worry that I won’t ever do it good enough and it makes me nervous to be too close to someone like that. I’m afraid to move or not move. And I don’t typically run to be in relationships with people like this.
When we start with a wrong perception of our Maker we will undoubtably lose touch with him on a personal level. How then do we keep a strong vibrant relationship with God? How do we live our lives so that when we reach heaven we will know him and he us?

Yesterday in Sunday School our teacher gave us several ideas of how to keep every minute of our lives devoted to Jesus.
As he started giving out different thoughts on daily disciplines of reading scripture one idea caught my attention.
Read 2 chapters from the OT and 1 from the NT And one Psalm every morning.
Well I’ve been reading out of Kings so I just continued that but added 1 NT chapter as well.
But this is what really peaked my interest. Out of those chapters ask God to give you 1 verse or phrase that you meditate on throughout the day.
I liked that idea because it gives me a consistent method. I don’t know about you but when I was growing up I didn’t really fix my bed at all. It remained unmade most of the time. Sometimes when I cleaned my smelly teen room it would get fixed but it wasn’t a routine and therefore I never realized how good it felt to crawl into my made bed at night.
When I was getting ready to marry at the tender age of 22 my mother gave me a little piece of wisdom. “Never have a messy bedroom. Even if the rest of the house is chaotic make sure your bedroom is a haven.” Well, that has stuck with me and when I got into the routine of fixing my bed every morning it drives me crazy to have it unmade now. If I walk into my room with my bed messed up I quickly fix it again.
I think that’s what a consistent patterns does for us. We feel like somethings missing when we don’t continue following the pattern.
So thinking about one verse today is what I’m doing…
And my phrase today is “Jesus heal me if you want to…and Jesus said.. I want to, be healed“.
I love that Jesus responded with I want to. And then he went ahead and healed the leaper.

I am thinking of some people that I know that need some physical healing and others who need emotional healing. I am praying for some of my friends that feel like mental healing is what they need. And I’m thinking of others who need healing in their marriages and family relationships. I know you Jesus are the great healer. I ask if you are willing…bring healing to your children. Thank you for your amazing love that flows from your throne and fills our hearts.

Do you have a method you use to walk daily in the word? What helps you to stay close to the Jesus who loves you?

But Why?

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Do you have children? Or been around them much?
What is their favorite question?
Why?
Why?
Why?
And often it is asked with a slight lilt in the voice.
“BUT WHY”?
It can drive a mama up the crazy tree.Which is why parents will often resort to the age-old…
“BECAUSE I said so”!
MMm Hmm. That’s right. Because I said so!
And that’s that.
I have been reminded by pastors sermons the past few weeks how I have not always grown up in that area.
Sometimes I like to know why.
Why God?
Why me?
Why didn’t you answer that situation the way I wanted?

But this is the deal…
If I get caught up on the why I miss the what.

When did I start thinking that God had to explain the why to me?
Like somehow he should have to explain everything to my understanding.

If I instead say….
What?What did you want me to learn from this?
What do you have in mind next?
What do you have to say about that.
I will become a lot less frustrated with trying to figure out the why.
And
I will be able to follow Jesus for who he really is and not for who I want him to be.

Which if I’m being honest with you I will say that I wish life would have no pain or suffering or death or dishes or anything that brings me discomfort and stretches my patience.
And when it’s not like that…. And my circumstance start to feel overwhelming and sad I wonder if Jesus is going to be “good” to me like everyone says he is when he answers in the way they prayed…. And it turns out happy…. And “God is good” is heard all over…. It makes me turn to why?
Lets just say it…sometimes Jesus gives us some Hard pills to swallow.
It doesn’t make him less good. But we do have a tendency to wonder if we believed a lie about him. And we do have a bent to go down the road of “Don’t you love me like you do those people”?
“Why God…just tell me why and maybe in time I’ll trust you again”.
Actually if I really want to know the real Jesus I realize that figuring out “the What” is how Jesus looked at his life. He knew what his life on earth was about.
And if I say I follow…I must look at the “what” just like he did.

What next God?
I’m a wide open book…write your story on my heart.

Message of Hope

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I don’t know about you but sometimes I can get a little anxious when I hear predictions about our country’s future.
It looks bleak.
And if I turn on the news it becomes worse.
I feel this ball start to form in the pit of my stomach. It can gnaw on me as I think about all the ” what if’s”.
Then I remember this….
My trust should not be in people. OR any country.

My trust is in the MAKER of HEAVEN and EARTH.
He has a plan.
He knows the plan.
And He will accomplish His plan.
There is nothing so reassuring to me then to be reminded of this.

My Father is not worried about our economy.
Or health.
Or presidential election.
Or housing crisis.
He is not wringing his hands or cringing in fear.
Maybe you need to be reminded of this word today….

Psalm 146
New Living Translation (NLT)

Psalm 146
1 Praise the Lord!

Let all that I am praise the Lord.
2 I will praise the Lord as long as I live.
I will sing praises to my God with my dying breath.

3 Don’t put your confidence in powerful people;
there is no help for you there.
4 When they breathe their last, they return to the earth,
and all their plans die with them.
5 But joyful are those who have the God of Israel[a] as their helper,
whose hope is in the Lord their God.
6 He made heaven and earth,
the sea, and everything in them.
He keeps every promise forever.
7 He gives justice to the oppressed
and food to the hungry.
The Lord frees the prisoners.
8 The Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
The Lord lifts up those who are weighed down.
The Lord loves the godly.
9 The Lord protects the foreigners among us.
He cares for the orphans and widows,
but he frustrates the plans of the wicked.

10 The Lord will reign forever.
He will be your God, O Jerusalem,[b] throughout the generations.

Praise the Lord!

That’s the kind of news that brings hope.

A hopeful message that he is still in charge.

He will reign! And if it all falls apart…

He is Still the one who can be trusted.

May your day be filled with the hope that Jesus wants to fill you with.

The peace that passes understanding.

The joy that makes your life worth living.

First Camp of the year

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Memorial Day weekend we took our little family and headed up north to camp.
We met a group of friends up there.
It was 4 families with 4 kids each…we make quite a tribe. 🙂
I like camping.

I really liked camping as a kid.

And that’s mostly why I still go. Because I have kids. And they like it.

Don’t get me wrong I love being with our camping buddies 24/7…Sitting around the fire and roasting things.
But it is work.

And that part is not always so fun. And is probably why you don’t see lots of seniors sitting around in tents and campers.
They have moved up and now bring their homes to the park. They look fresh and bright-eyed as they walk their dogs in the morning.

It was a stormy weekend. Which always means one thing….Dirt and laundry prevails!

On Sunday night the camp directors came around telling us that winds of 60 mph were expected. So everyone was to come to the shelter.
Well someone in our group had already hatched another plan…
We had spotted an ice cream place on our way up that looked like it could house all of us, so we loaded up and headed out.
All 24 of us!

The ice cream was amazing!

And it felt more comforting to be in a building.
After 20 minutes or so the storm blew over and we headed back to camp.
The weekend ended with sunshine on Monday.
Just in time to take a COLD dip into the pool. (My feet were all that got dipped…WAY too cold!)


It was a great time.
I love this time of year!

 Even with the storms!

I love coming back home to my house and bed.

I love making memories with the little people who are getting bigger every day!