Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Most Wonderful Time...

The Christmas season is here and I absolutely love it, especially the shopping. I get to see my family in less than 2 weeks and I'm pretty excited about that. I greatly miss my nephew and niece. I have not seen them since last Christmas. I can only imagine how much they have changed. I seem to always make the best memories with them. I'm coaching a girls' basketball team for church now, and that has also been so much fun.

The one thing that has consumed my life lately is school and because of it my brain has been fried. The class is Evangelism and Missions. I'm thinking that should be pretty straight-forward with not a lot of new things. I didn't expect to be challenged. I had no idea that some of these ideas would smack me in the face and I wouldn't be able to let go. I love it and I hate it, cause it makes me question things. I want to think outside of the box and not become so accustomed to some of the ideas and traditions that people do because "it has always been done that way." I have read some of the most interesting books and heard some interesting presentations and discussions.

What has plagued me the most is discipleship. Why doesn't the church actively participate in discipleship? Why haven't I ever had the opportunity to be discipled? Would someone really be willing to give up a year of their life and invest it in the life of another? How I would love to be actively involved in discipleship! The idea of digging into the Word of God and feeding off of another's thoughts and ideas. The idea of being transparent and sharing struggles along with the joys of life. It absolutely blows my mind. It is greatly needed in my church and it is greatly needed in my life. I read this book, "The Master Plan of Evangelism" by Robert Coleman. Some of the most fascinating stuff I have ever read, none of the ideas were new. It was about how Jesus took 12 guys and truly discipled them. It continues to blow my mind. Jesus, the ultimate example in all things.

I'm still processing and when I have some answers I may share. Christmas is definitely my favorite because a baby came to save the world. I pray I never get over these words, "Behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour who is Christ the Lord."

This Christmas season, may you experience a relationship with the baby who became a Saviour.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Life in the Fast Lane!

I love blogs. A few lately have interested me enough to check them out every day. Sometimes, I read awhile and sometimes I move on. My life seems to go about 90 mph and most days I love it. Lately, it seems that I need reminding to slow down. I got a nasty, ugly reminder last week in the form of shingles. Yes, shingles, the adult version of the chicken pox. I don't remember the chicken pox being as bad as shingles are, but hey I'm a big baby and my tolerance for pain is on the negative level. So, big surprise that I was a big baby for a few days. However, my family is not known for their overwhelming sympathy, so I was forced to complain to other people. If I shared my pain with you, thank you for not slapping me.

October was quite the month. My favorite thing was the girls' retreat that I have the opportunity to plan and put on every year at my church. It pushes my creativity to the limits and stresses me out beyond imagination and I love every single minute of it. Especially when it all comes together for one crazy event. My favorite part was on Saturday when the Moms of these girls came and spent the afternoon. It was so cool and so much fun! I was surprised at their response. It was a blessing for me to just see them playing games, worshipping, and interacting with their daughters. I loved my idea for it, and ended up praying the whole time that it would not be flop. God went above and beyond my wildest expectations. :)

The end of October and the beginning of November is a most special time for me because it means birthday celebrations for my niece and nephew. :) They are a joy and delight to my heart.

Well, I am abruptly going to end this. Next week is Thanksgiving and I have 1 million and 1 things to be thankful for. I will write about them next week. Life is pretty crazy in the fast lane and just for the record, I think that I am enjoying the ride.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Sunflowers are one of my absolute favorite flowers, so imagine my surprise today when a beautiful bunch of sunflowers were delivered to my office.

They were from my older brother... how random! He's done a lot of great things for me, but never just sent flowers. Turns out that on my birthday almost 2 months ago, he failed to call his one and only sister! He decided to send me flowers on his birthday! So, it was like his cheesy apology, except it ended up being really sweet and cool! :)

Today, I'm thankful for my brothers. Both of them have had birthdays this week and I'm so glad to be able to enjoy life with them. These guys are the best, cause I know that they have my back no matter what. Life wasn't always so great with them growing up. We did our share of fighting and arguing. Nobody will ever pick on me as much as they do!! :) Time has made us completely different people and circumstances have separated us across the miles. This has not hindered the friendships that has developed... I'm so glad for a relationship with each of my brothers. You are definitely the best brothers a girl could ask for... Thanks for the flowers Darryl. That is just like something you would do... Happy Birthday Darryl and Jimbo! I love ya'll and I love being your sister!!!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Except for the people you meet

I was thinking of the old saying that goes something like this, "Five years from now, you will be the same person you are today, except for the books you read and the people you meet." I've meet quite a few people in my life and obviously some have impacted for the positive and others for the negative. I dated a guy for awhile a few years ago and our relationship ended badly. Sometimes, I would catch myself thinking, what was the point of this? I got a little insight into it the other day and needed to share.

Somewhere back in April 2003, I wrote down these words in a journal from Isaiah 42:16, "I will bring the blind by a way they did not know; I will lead them in paths they have not known, I will make the dakrness light before them, And crooked places straight. These things I will do for them, And not forsake them." This was the verse that God used to point my heart in the direction of full-time Christian service. God used this to soften me for the next best thing He desired to show me. I was blindly reaching out for something and God used this verse and this certain guy to show me what He desired in my life. This guy I was dating encouraged me to pursue ministry and 3 years later, I am amazed at the fact that God has chosen to use me.

Today, I am thankful for a failed relationship. Looking back, it is obvious that he the one that God had for me, but I am thankful for the time that we had together. If only for the simple fact that I can look today and see that God was doing something much bigger in my life. I'm so glad that we are different because of the people that God brings into our lives.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

More Wonderful

I cannot get this song by Aaron Shust out of my head. I have been listening to it for over a week and everytime I hear it, it makes me smile. I get so wrapped up in myself and my crazy life sometimes. It reminds me to step back and take a look at the greatness of God. My faults are great and still God chooses to love. Kinda overwhelms me and I love it. Enjoy these words! I certainly have!

God of unending grace,
I come to You on my face
I need to hear You speak to me,
Won't You make me new right now

God of omnipotent power,
visit us in this hour
And may we leave here changed
because we've met with You, God

You've been more wonderful to me
than I could have ever imagined
You've shown more love than
I could show in a thousand years
And although it seems at times
like it all means nothing to me
You gotta know that I love You
You gotta know that I need You

God of wisdom and love,
settle down from above
Give us all a taste of what
Your Holy Spirit can do

Time and time again we've betrayed,
but our debt's already been paid
And all that leaves me wanting
is to live for you, God

When the world crashes down around me
I know You'll be there to pull me out from the rubble
When my enemy surrounds and I call on your name
You'll be there to deliver me from my troubled soul

Rescue me from all my selfish ways
and thoughts and deeds and plans
Lead me in the everlasting way
and I will follow you there

Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11, 2001

This date will forever be etched in my memory. I believe it is to my generation what the assassination of JFK was to my parent's generation or the attack on Pearl Harbor to my grandparent's generation.

I remember everything about September 11th. I was on my way to school and I heard it on the radio. It seemed like some kind of crazy accident. It was not until I got to school that I would realized the great tragedy of the events that occurred. Who in the world would do something to our country? My mind asked all kinds of questions as I sat watching a row of tv screens. First, the Twin Towers, the Pentagon, and finally Pennsylvania. What was going on in my country where I had always felt so safe?

My first two classes were cancelled and I waited around for my noon class, not sure what to do. My older brother was in Florida for work with no way to return back to Ohio. His voice was definitely the most comforting that day. I was also concerned for my extremely pregnant sis-in-law, and later found out that she was staying at her parents house. I remember the feeling that I just needed to hear the voice of those people that I loved.

My last class of the day was Music Appreciation. My professor decided that we were not going to accomplish anything, so he let us go. My professor was also my piano teacher and that day was my day for a lesson. I went like normal, but without the focus and confidence that I usually possessed. I sat down at the piano and started to play. I have no idea what I played but I played for over an hour. Occasionally, my teacher would play along with me and sometimes he would just sit there. He gave no corrections or suggestions. He just let me play. I had never played with such power and emotion. I was looking for something good to come out of this horrible day and for me, it was music.

I was thinking about Job last week. His story in the Bible intrigues me everytime I read it. In the first chapter after he has lost everything, he fell to the ground and worshipped. I had the opportunity to do that on September 11, 2001. The music I played had nothing to do with me. It was my act of worship.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

It's Been Awhile

waiting room by shane barnard
i will run when i cannot walk
i will sing when there is no song
i will pray when there is no prayer
i will listen when i cannot hear

sitting in the waiting room of silence
waiting for that still soft voice i know
offering my words up to the rooftop to Your heart
trusting that this closet's where You are

Lord i know if i change my mind
You will change my heart in time
Sovereign Lord this time's from You
so i sit in the waiting room of silence

cause its all about You
i will fight when i cannot feel
i will trust when You dont seem real
i will tell when i cannot speak
i will step when i cannot see

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


Alrighty! Well, it is the eve of my 25th birthday and currently I am pondering, why in the world do I still get zits? I mean God and time are revealing to me that I am growing up, but exactly when will I grow out of getting these horrible disgusting pimples? Yuck, well, anyway! :)

On to better things, like 25 years! Wow, what was God thinking to bless my life with 25 crazy years? I have already been given some great gifts and had the opportunity to spend some time with some of my favorite people. This past weekend, it was all about my immediate family in Jonesboro. I got to hang out with Mom and Dad, but mostly Jim. He is a crazy kid, and will forever be one of my favorite people in the world. By the end of the weekend, we had a list of "only in Arkansas" jokes. He is so much fun! I'm so thankful for him. Hopefully, he will not keep the birthday tradition and call at 12:05 a.m. Jim calls as early as possible and Darryl, my older brother, will probably call around 11:00 p.m. Oh, they are great!

I wish I could reflect on 25 years, but my mind is tired. I leave with this thought. I am reminded of I John 3:1, "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God..." How awesome! The Father's love is more than enough and by accepting it, we receive the title 'Children of God!' How exciting!

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Wow, where do I even begin? This last month of my life has just completely flown by, did I even stop for 2 seconds to take a break! I don't really feel like I did. Just to highlight some of the high points: one of my roommates left for a 2 year teaching job in Mexico - I miss you, Teri. My other roommate and I moved out of our apartment into her parent's house before we move into our new apartment. My sis-in-law turned 30. I went to Middle School Camp. I have done some other things in the meantime as well, like drink a lot of coffee, shop, listen to music, sleep, clean, shower... and the list goes on. I turn 25 next week and I'm definitely not sure if I am looking forward to that or not! Why are changes so stinkin hard? Doesn't make sense to me!!!

One thing that has been constant is my Sunday School class. I moved up with my 6th grade girls from last year, who are now 7th graders. I have been challenged in a new way to make the Word of God exciting and fun as we grow together in our faith. This year, I'm teaching on Old Testament characters. I'm sure that I will learn a lot!! I'm excited about them and teaching them!

In these past few weeks I have encountered some really interesting things in God's Word. I have been challenged and encouraged with different passages, but keep going back to one of my favorites. "The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save: He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing." (Zephaniah 3:17) I love this!!!!!! What an encouragement and joy!

I promise to share more later! I'm enjoying the Beth Moore study on Daniel. I highly recommend checking it out!

All for now--

Monday, July 17, 2006

Impressed Much!

It has been awhile. I spent a week at camp and then life was just a little crazy on the return. I completed an incredible class on Christian Leadership. I learned so much. I hope it sticks around in my head a little longer to actually put into practice in my everyday life.

Camp was the most incredible thing for me and the point of this blog. Lately, not many things have impressed me. I haven't been impressed by any guy in awhile (sad, but true). I think I have even failed to impress myself... the whole do whatever it takes to get by mentality or something. (I personally hate it!) So, this was my attitude until camp.

I heard a quote by the speaker, JR Vasser, that was something like this, "Jesus has become something common to us that He ceases to impress us." This clicked with me completely. I have always done the church thing and participated in everything, and somewhere along the way Jesus has become common to me. How can Someone who came to earth as man, yet was still God become common??? The text for the week was from Philippians 2:5-11. Check it out, it has always been one of my favorites, but this week I saw it in a completely different light! The wonderful work of the cross, the involvement in my everyday life, the glorious grace that is mine, the mediator of my prayers... HOW DOES THIS NOT IMPRESS ME? I hate rude awakenings, reality checks, and conviction. I got it all.

The God of the universe does not have to, but He chooses to love me. That thought greatly impresses me!!!

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Not An Ordinary Day

This week, I have seen pretty much all of my family that lives anywhere near me. I took my mom & dad out for their anniversary on Thursday night! On Friday night, my little bro, Jimbo came for a visit. We hung out for most of the weekend and he left this afternoon. I don't get to see them too often, so I enjoy it. I especially appreciate it when they come to see me.

I've been challenged a lot lately with the Word of God, and it would be an understatement to say that I have been convicted. I feel like God is trying to open up my brain and stuff a ton of things in there that I need to learn, but haven't gotten yet. I've been really challenged not to live my life out as a mediocre Christian. What do I mean by that? I think I have become comfortable in my Christianity, and instead of striving to be more like Jesus, I have settled. I am complacent and I don't want to be. After attempting to do something about it on my own, I gave it to the only One who can change me. This has now become my heart's cry... "God please don't let me be satisfied with my walk with you, but desire you more than ever before."

Here's the verse that is stuck in my head, "For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not accomplished through me, in word and deed..." (Romans 15:18)

Friday, June 30, 2006

Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad!

Yesterday was my parent's 38th Anniversary!! Yep, blows my mind how people can be married that long. This little thought is one of my favorites on marriage. It reminds me of Mom & Dad!

In May 1943, German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote a letter to a young bride and groom, advising them on the nature of the union they were about to enter:
"Your love is your own private possession, but marriage is more than something personal — it is a status, an office. Just as it is the crown, and not merely the will to rule, that makes the king, so it is marriage, and not merely your love for each other, that joins you together in the sight of God and man. As you gave the ring to one another and have now received it a second time from the hand of the pastor, so love comes from you, but marriage from above, from God. As high as God is above man, so high are the sanctity, the rights, and the promise of love. It is not your love that sustains the marriage, but from now on, the marriage that sustains your love."

Congrats Mom & Dad! What a wonderful example you have showed me of a God-centered marriage!! May God bless the years to come!

Monday, June 26, 2006

A little Philippians

I have been crazy busy lately with school, camps, and the million other things that I like to add to my plate. I was encouraged by these words in Philippians today,
"Not that I have already atained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those thing which are ahead. I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Philppians 3:12-14)

Saturday, June 24, 2006

What a Week!

I know that I have probably shared this with most people before, but my life is some crazy rollercoaster that is sometimes up and sometimes down. Especially today, I am so thankful that God is constant. It is encouraging that His strength is made perfect in my weakness. Obviously running my mouth is a weakness, not sure how He is using that, but I'm sure God sees the bigger picture.

My favorite passage of Scripture this week has been the story of Onesimus and Philemon in the small book of Philemon that is hidden between Titus and Hebrews. Paul is obviously appealing to Philemon on Onesimus' behalf. The story doesn't really say what Onesimus did besides run away, but I'm sure he probably did something to screw up. I can so easily relate to Onesimus, and often I need someone to appeal on my behalf. I think about Jesus and how He serves as my advocate to the Heavenly Father and when I mess up and need forgiveness. Obviously this has been my life more this week than normal. What a blessing that God forgives and forgets!!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Tribute to Dads

Happy Almost Father's Day!

My dad is a pretty wonderful man, so I thought I would give him a little shout out this Father's Day! I love these man-made, card selling holidays. It gives me good reasons to go to Hallmark!
Anyway, on to Dad.

I love my dad for many reasons, but I'm gonna share the top 3:
  • He inspires me to be more like Jesus!!
  • He listens to me!!
  • He is a thinker!!

Yep, those are my favorite things about my dad (right now, at least)! I think it is great how God gives us exactly what we need in a Father. I have so many great memories with my dad. Some of my favorites are talking in the car on the way home from volleyball practice. It would just be the two of us, and I am never quiet, so Dad and I would have some great conversations. I love being able to just talk to my dad, he is so wise and has more experience than most people I have ever met. When we talked I felt that he would listen to me, and it didn't matter that I was 9 or 15, he would talk to me like I was important and had something interesting to say.

I guess you could say that I am a Daddy's Girl (and proud of it, especially on Father's Day). God has put so many incredible men in my life in addition to my dad, like my big brother who is the dad of my sweet nephew and niece. I am also remind of a certain "adopted" dad at my church who always makes me feel like one of his "real" kids! These amazing people whom God has placed in my life give me a great picture how wonderful my Heavenly Father is!

Awesome God, thank you so much for Dads, without them my life would not be the same, and because of them my life has been greatly impacted forever!

Friday, June 16, 2006

the beginning

I decided I needed a blog. Some days, I face times where I just need to spit out whatever is in my head onto paper, and my sweet laptop allows me to do it more quickly. This may only be for my family and close friends, I don't need a blog following, just a place to share some thoughts that are not viewed by the entire world.

This week has been stressful, and it always seems that in the middle of the stress God desires to show me something. This time it was been that He desires personal retreat with me. A majority of the time I seem so busy with the craziness that is going on around me, that I forget to stop and listen to His voice. I still have my quiet time in the morning, but I feel like I am just doing it out of habit. He gently reminds me of my desperate need for Him, and I fall on my face seeking repentence and a greater longing and desire to hear from Him. This week my faith has been questioned, tested, and encouraged. I know I probably could have done better, but I feel like everything is a learning experience for me. It appears that sometimes the lesson is harder to grasp.