Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Remembering Logan

Today is the one year anniversary of Logan Matak. You might remember when I wrote this about him . I think mostly about the huge void left in the lives of his mom, dad, brother and sisters....and really everyone who knew him. What a loss for us here on earth....but what a gain for Logan. It's hard in my earthly mind to think there is anything greater than getting married, having kids, enjoying this life- even on my most spiritual days it's hard to fathom just how much BETTER heaven is going to be. I've tried thinking of the most perfect day and all I know is that HEAVEN will be BETTER.

Logan is experiencing that. Those chills that run down my arm when I am listening to a song of worship to my Lord.....Logan is getting to experience first hand....he's there!!! The feeling of great comfort I've been given over circumstances...even his own death...He gets to be in the very presence of that great COMFORTER. He's there...worshipping and probably wondering what all the big fuss is about him here on earth. We miss him. We miss his sweet, generous spirit. We miss watching him play baseball. We miss fishing trips, corny jokes, his special little trick he did and his love for the downhearted and hurting.

But....we are not without gentle reminders of the things that are eternal about Logan. His spirit. His love for Jesus. His love for people. His desire to honor God. So, for all those, who like me, are thinking of Logan today, I hope the good far exceeds the sorrow. I'm thankful this is not the end.

Monday, March 29, 2010


It's funny. I've been waiting for today like a child waits for Christmas. Anticipating, hoping, wondering. But it feels more like that gentle letdown you feel after you've opened that last present. You're appreciative, but you don't want the feeling of excitement to end.

Today we go to closing on our house in Gunter. I can't believe it's been for sale for almost 11 months. I remember the day I put the store bought for sale by owner sign in the yard, the day we hired our realtor, the day we lowered the price, the day we had our first offer, the day we lost our first offer, the day we accepted a rental contract on it, the day we renewed our contract with our realtor and the day that this last offer came in...and we finally had a go to closing contract! There's been anticipation, hope and a whole lot of wondering...just like Christmas.

But in the midst of each step of the way, there's also been an incredible peace. Sure, I am glad to get this behind me - but God has taught me so much about HIM during this process that I am dreading the beautiful letdown of this phase of my life being over. I don't ever want to forget these lessons, the indescribable peace and wisdom He's given. I don't want to forget that HIS timing is everything. I don't want to forget that HIS provisions are planned perfectly according to our needs.

Most of all I don't want to forget how this journey all got started. Obedience....and I'm not saying this in pride....I am saying it as my EBENEZER rock (rock of remembrance). I am thankful that Bruce was obedient to lead our family to a place of human uncertainties and that He trusted God in a big way. I am thankful for our time living in a hotel, an RV and for the purchase of our new home 6 months before this one sold (with this economy....who does that???? ---GOD does)

So maybe you can understand...with all this GOD stuff happening around me the last 10 months, why I am just a little hesitant about putting this part of life behind me. BUT, I am reminded He has new steps of obedience for me to take. New mercies for me to experience each morning. New faith to develop. I'm looking forward to it! And for now...I have my Ebenezer Rock to remind me of this journey.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

Turn the Table

I've had this table for about 2 years. A lady in our previous church gave it to me (Thanks Charlotte Akers) and while I loved it dearly, it lacked the sparkle of a restored antique.

You'll notice there are mulitple drinking glass marks on the top, along with glitter on the sides (hmmm, wonder what 7 year old thought this table would look better all blinged out?)

So on a recent trip to Wally World. I picked up this...and decided to makeover my table

And here's what it looks like now! I love it!

Who knew a dollar's worth of paint could make me fall in love all over again!?!?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thankful Thursday

This week (and always) I have so much to be thankful for. I've linked up today with Greg at http://gregsgeneralstore.blogspot.com/
- join in if you want...or share something here that you are thankful for!

1. It looks like everything is right on schedule with the sale of the house in Gunter. This will be so good to have behind us. Thank you Lord!

2. Savannah and I had a great time at the homeschool field trip to the Spy Exhibit last week in Dallas. She has talked about it for days..it's amazing what they pick up even when we think they aren't paying attention!

3. After much prayer and a nudge from the Holy Spirit...God allowed my boss and I to have a conversation about me reducing my hours. I've become increasingly burdened/convicted that I need to spend more time being mom and wife. This is a huge step of faith on many accounts and I am thankful that God allowed the conversation to go so smoothly. I'm blessed indeed.

4. Our prayer service at church on Wednesday nights continues to be one of the most rewarding times of the week for me (if you are in Sulphur Springs and  need a mid-week spiritual battery charge- join us at Central Baptist Church). Last night we learned about being wide open to receive all God has for us...how he wants to bless us, but so many times our own stubborn will gets in the way- just like the Israelites.

5. I'm thankful for friends -near and far away- who I enjoy....whether laughing, crying, goofing off, talking, praying or just catching up...they are too numerous to count (thankfully) - but I am thankful for their presence in my life----and you too, my bloggy friends.

Hope you have a very Thankful Thursday!

Monday, March 22, 2010

An Extreme God

I've been thinking quite a bit about the BIGNESS of God lately. It started when I began reading Crazy Love by Francis Chan. The author spends quite a bit of time in chapters 1 and 2 focusing on how big God is. He challenges readers to spend time thinking about the BIGNESS of God. During the challenge, I discovered some amazing things about my Big God. I have been reminded of His Extremeness in a few ways recently:

1. In March, on the first day of Spring, it snowed in Texas.
2. One day later, highs near 70.

1. I saw an IMAX movie on Alaska.
2. I heard about the volcanic eruption in Iceland.

1. I've experienced the extreme love of God at salvation...and daily.
2. I've also experience His love in correcting me when I do wrong....none the less...extreme love.

My lists of comparisons could go on and on and on, but one thing I KNOW is that God is extreme. He's bigger than I can imagine and comprehend. And the bigness of God reaches down and is somehow intimately interested in what goes on in my life.

He was big enough to create this world...all of it. And compassionate enough to care when a sparrow falls.
Big enough to part the Red Sea and caring enough to hear Hannah's prayer for a child.
Big enough to walk in the fiery furnace and gentle enough to welcome children into the arms of His son.

Creation screams His majesty. Heaven sings His praise. Humanity...a small remnant of us....bows on bended need and cries out for his grace, mercy and peace. He hears is all. Sees it all.

So on a day in history, when we wonder where God is and what direction everything is headed....let's not forget the BIGNESS of the great God we claim. He's in control. He's over all. He's EXTREMELY capable.

I don't know about you...but I'm trusting Him!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Good Place To Be

So lately the posts haven't been so personal. Frankly, I've got writer's block...sort of. I know what's going on, what's bothering me, but truth be told, it's just a little too much for me to write about right now. Sometimes I have to clear the hurdle before I can testify about it.

A couple of things I know about going through uncertain times:

1. God is able to do exceedingly more than I could EVER do on my own.

2. God is faithful. I can trust Him. I've seen Him work before.

3. No matter how alone or uncertain I feel, what I KNOW is so much more real.

4. Sometimes what doesn't seem like a big deal to others, is a big deal to God. And if He speaks to me about it and requires change, then I've got to do it, no matter what others say, think or imply.

So, I'm going to trust what I've learned from the past. Thankful for the pressing on lessons I am learning. It's a good place to be....in the waiting.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

10 Years from Now...

This is what I will be dealing with....

You should start praying now...

Saturday, March 13, 2010

A Good Day Consists

.....of getting kids up early
....of digging in the dirt
....of planting
       snapdragons and gladiolas and inpatients and Shasta daisies and sunflowers
....of sitting outside for lunch
....of hoeing rows
       for onions, potatoes, spinach, carrots, peas and broccoli
....of weeding
      clover and wild onions
....of cleaning outdoor furniture
....of picking up sticks and pine cones and straggling pecans
....of a cold, tall glass of tea to quench my thirst
....of dark soil
....of hubby helping
....of a boy with a watergun
.....of a girl afraid her hands are gonna get dirty so she wears her winter gloves
....of cleaning ponds and filters and pumps
....of kittens playing
....of cackling  laughter
....of a little sweat
....of some dirt under my nails
....of a good shower
....and my sweet family of helpers

....yes, that makes for a pretty good day at my house.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My Favorite Time of the Week

Some of you might think that my favorite times include time I spend with my family, juggling the kids, gardening, shopping, reading, working, decorating, cooking....(wow, I have quite a few hobbies!) but the truth is, I have a new favorite.

In January, our pastor decided to take a different approach to our Wednesday night service. It's always been used as a primary time to go through the prayer requests of our church family, but he wanted to change it up- to get serious- to focus on the priority of prayer....and not just the talking part.

I admit/confess (embarrassingly) that I was none too excited about this. I wondered what we were going to do to fill an entire hour (oh, how foolish I am).

Over the weeks, I have become broken, burdened and peace-filled. It didn't take long for me to have a new favorite time of the week. A few of the reasons I love this time are:

1. It's quiet...such a change from life. During prayer time, there's not even background music, which I normally love, but it sometimes distracts me from listening to God.

2. It's reflective...it takes me a few minutes sitting there to really get reflective before God. Sometimes I don't even get there...depending on what's going on in my life..but at least it gets me focused in the right direction.

3. It's encouraging...we are keeping journals and watching God do His thing is absolutely WONDERFUL! He is answering requests weekly and it's encouraging to hear about them and document them.

4. It's edifying...sometimes we break into groups of 2-4 and pray together. I get to share with someone what's on my heart and they do the same. Hearing someone lift up your heart requests and pray for you builds you up.

Oh...there's more...I could go on and on. I love that it's a designated time for me to listen to God and then pour my heart out to Him in praise and adoration. An hour...that I thought would be boring...has turned into an hour that's not long enough!

Perhaps this has been too honest...I wish it wasn't true....but I wonder how many of us really don't put our full stock in the power of communicating with God. By now, I should be ashamed that I don't see how many prayers He has answered because I don't take the time to get still in front of Him.

I am thankful for a church, a pastor who sees and believes in the power of teaching this church to pray.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Want a KINDLE?

A fun way to have a chance to win a Kindle: http://tr.im/QLiX Just vote on your favorite book trailer!

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Old Pink Robe Ain’t What She Used to Be

Disclaimer: I discussed with my mom while I was in ATL that this would be an excellent subject for a blog post. I think she thinks I have forgotten about it...so it will be interesting to see what she has to say once she reads this (If you don't hear from me in 48-72 hours you should probably send out a search warrant)!

Years ago my mom bought a pink chenille robe. She paid $100 for it. It was a special robe – floor length, pockets and an attached belt – all things she had been searching for in a robe. For the last 10 years she’s been faithful to wear the robe. Cuddled up on the couch, down the sidewalk to grab the paper, standing out on the deck to take the dog out, in a suitcase from Georgia to Texas and back several times – that robe has seen a few miles. However, like everything else in life, over time the robe is beginning to look a little worn. Years of washing and wearing have taken a toll on the precious pink garment. The chenille is worn out in place, leaving thin patches of worn fabric polka dotting the robe. The color has faded to a pale shade of baby pink. There’s no stiffness to the shawl collar and the coffee and ice cream stains that dribble the front of the robe don’t add anything to its already humble state.

On a recent trip back home to see my mom, we discussed the terrible turn of events that are leading up to the demise of the pink robe. My mom reminisced about the beauty, softness, warmth and specialness of the robe. I reminded her how hideous it looked. She talked of better days with the robe. I reminded her of how ridiculous it is to hold on to something so worn out. Near tears, she explained that she would never find a robe half as good as this one. I looked for matches to set the thing on fire.

Of course we laughed at the sheer humor of it all and we put on our agenda to start looking for another perfect robe. But, the irony of it all is that as Christians, each day we have the opportunity to put on our new garments of holiness, righteousness, kindness, faith and love and many times instead, we choose the garments of filth, sin, pride and deceit. Oh how Christ must feel when He has already made a way for such glorious garments to be worn and yet we continue to wear our old pink robe. What an example this world needs of Christians who are adorned in godliness! Let’s get dressed up in the things that will lead others to wonder where we got our clothes….and while we’re at it, let’s burn the old pink robe!

Verse: To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified. Isaiah 61:3

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Thankful Thursday

My Thankful Thursday post this week revolves around the sale of our house in Gunter. For those who don't know the back-story. Mid May last year we put our house up for sale and after months of waiting, we accepted an offer on Tuesday night and signed the contract yesterday. Here's my list of thanks:

1. I am thankful for the renter's God provided in Dec to help offset the expense of two mortgages.
2. I am thankful for a God who know exactly the right time to answer prayers.
3. I am thankful for God's provision of alternate housing while we waited during July-Oct. (AKA rv days, hotel days and eating out days)
4. I am thankful for family and friends who have prayed with us.
5. I am thankful for the growth I have seen in Savannah (7yod) as we prayed each time the house would show. Her prayers became more specific and direct each time. What an amazing lesson to learn so young in life.

Continued prayers are requested...closing in approx. 30 days. Nothing's final til then in this economy. Trusting God in all things.

Link up to this meme at Women Taking a Stand or leave a comment here.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

If you prayed...

If you prayed that

this house would sell-

Thank YOU!
We accepted an offer last night.

Please continue to pray:

1. Closing goes on without a hitch...buyers want a 30 day closing.
2. Our current renters will be able to find something
 quickly and that their move goes well.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Please Don't Send Me to Africa

When I was in college the song,  "Please Don't Send Me to Africa" was popular among Christians. It was a humorous take on the seriousness of giving your life fully to Christ. I've never been particularly scared to go to Africa, but if you know Bruce and his horrible fear of snakes, then you know it would be an act of GOD if we ever ended up living in Africa.

However, this week is our mission's conference at church. It's been over 5 years since I have sat in one. I've sat in services where there have been missionaries speaking, but it's been a while since I got to have some one on one time with these heroes. They are remarkable.

Sunday's message was brought by a college friend of ours who is home on furlough from Peru. He talked about the kingdom of God and our treasure. He used bits and pieces of illustrations from Francis Chan's book Crazy Love. The basic gist of the sermon was that when we take hold of the treasure then it will take hold of ever area of our life. Things will be measured by the impact for Christ rather than how much it cost, or the mere temporary discomfort or insecurity we may experience temporarily speaking. He talked about how society has adopted this idea of control...and yet God says he wants a "Take my Life" sort of attitude from Christians. He talked about the radical crazy love God has for us, and desires from us. The sermon was beautiful yet, heart wrenching. God spoke to me.

I've been asking God to do some things since that service Sunday. I feel like I've been waiting around wondering what He wants me to do for the kingdom. Sunday I sort of laid it all out for Him to see (of course He already knew.) I am anxious to see what happens. He's already working!