Monday, February 28, 2011

Easy Lemon Pie

I'm making this pie for tomorrow's missionary lunch. Super easy...and super yummy!

1 can eagle brand sweetened condensed milk
1 small can frozen lemonade
1 8oz container of Cool Whip
1 Graham Cracker Crust

Mix first three ingredients (I used my Kitchen Aid on #1). When smooth, pour into crust. Refrigerate 3 hours.

See, I told you it was easy!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Marvelous Missionaries

Tonight I had the opportunity to watch a missionary tell 4-5 year olds about what she does in South Africa as a missionary. Joanna Graham and her husband are missionaries to South Africa, where they run a sort of adoption home for the many orphans that have been left due to disease. The beauty of what they do was spelled out in super elementary terms so that my AWANA cubbies could understand. 

What they do is take 6 orphans and pair them with a granny. The granny is a woman who has raised her children and has no other obligations. These women volunteer to raise these six children. The missionaries help build the house that they will live in and help provide for basic needs, while the granny loves the children, takes care of them and ultimately shares Jesus with them. It's beautiful! 

I loved watching the eyes of the children light up as Joanna shared about the children, South Africa, animals and words in the native tongue. I loved watching Joanna's face light up she talked lovingly of those grannies and the sweet children. The sweet love she has for them is unmistakably Jesus. 

You can learn more about the Graham's ministry here ....go there now!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Staying on Mission

Tonight basically starts an 8 day fest of feasting with missionaries during our missions conference. There will be eating out, potlucks, and large quantity cooking, which usually means pastas or potatoes, right? I'm looking forward to the fellowship....but the food has me a little nervous.

So, I need to make a plan....and stick to it. Here goes...

1. Drink only water....and drink a large glass before the meals.

2. Exercise daily for one hour. This will burn approximately 500 calories...which is the equivalent of my breakfast and most of my lunch on a normal day. So, if I watch portions and bulk up on the salad and veggies I should be OK...meaning I won't gain. (I am taking my own Salad Dressing!)

3. 1 spoonful of dessert. I know....I could tell you I am NOT going to eat dessert...but who am I kiddin'. Instead....I am just going to eat one small serving one time a day. I'm talking tablespoon size.

4. Stop eating when I am full. And....yes, that might even mean before dessert!!!

5. Read my Bible every day.

6. If I feel like this isn't working after day one, then I will bring my own meal and eat it there.

So there's the plan to staying on mission. I'm excited for this challenge because this is the real world and I need to face these food challenges head on. In the real world it's me who has to monitor portion control and caloric intake. It's not all measured out for me with the calorie count on a nutritional information label right next to the pan of lasagna. I've got to be the one to have lots of self-control....or maybe, I should say GOD control.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Well hello....

Do you see it? Yep that's chin. 
It's been years since I saw it...well at least by itself....usually there were at least 2 of them.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for:

1. Friends who look out for my best interests.

2. The opportunity to serve.

3. Missionaries.

4. Words of encouragement from preschool parents.

5. An unexpected lunch date alone with Bruce/

How has God blessed you lately?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Stir Me Up

I'm starting to make preliminary preparations for our missions trip to Peru in June. I'm so excited to go...I can't stop thinking about it. I'm excited to see my friend, Miriam ....who after reconnecting after nearly 20 years last year has become dear to my heart in ways I'm sure only kindred spirits might understand. I'm excited to leave the country. I'm excited to experience a different culture. I'm excited to do service projects and other hard work. I'm excited to share Jesus with others. I'm excited to eat food that is different from the food in America. I'm excited to see the Andes Mountains. I'm excited to experience this with Bruce. But, the thing that excites me most is finding out what God has in store for me to learn, embrace and grasp. ME...not Bruce or the young people or the adults that will be traveling with us....but what GOD has for me. What does He what Gina to learn (yes....I am talking in 3rd person). What does He want ME to gain from this? What lessons does He want me to grasp? What does He want to do with ME? 

It's easy to think that He might speak to the teenagers that are going...after all they are young and adventurous....but the truth is, if I am listening I'm pretty sure He is capable of whispering something beautiful into my life....maybe a renewed sense of ministry, a more definite direction for something new, a reminder of my sole purpose here, a vision for something in my community.....who knows? But I'm anxious to hear from Him! I want to be stirred up....uncomfortable....challenged and changed!

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Me Project

Hi Blog Readers! Here's a book that I think you might enjoy. Read about it here and leave me a comment below about something you've always dreamed of doing and you will be entered into the yummy Starbucks giveaway.....that alone is worth the effort...right?

The Me Project - 21 Days to Living the Life You’ve Always Wanted
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers
ISBN-10: 0736929665, ISBN-13: 978-0736929660
Release Date: February 1, 2011
Paperback: 224 pages, Retail: $12.99

(San Jose, CA) Has that rush to make (and break) New Year’s resolutions already waned? According to Daniel Pink, author of Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, taking small steps every day will not only help you stay committed to your goal, but will also help you ultimately achieve that goal when obstacles come up. Author Kathi Lipp wants you and your friends to live out those dreams—and have some fun along the way.

As women, we forget the goals and dreams of our younger years. The busyness of everyday life gets in the way. To-do lists replace goals. The Me Project provides women with fun and creative ways to bring back the sense of purpose and vitality that comes with living out the plans and dreams God has planted in our hearts. Kathi Lipp’s warm tone and laugh-out-loud humor motivates women to take daily steps toward intentional goals. The end result? We get back our lives and enjoy living in the confidence of a purposeful life in spite of our chaotic schedules.

This handy guide coaches women to do one simple thing toward achieving our goals each day for three weeks. A woman experiencing the exhilaration of a rediscovered life offers more as a wife, mother, friend, volunteer, career woman.

Finding the balance between living day-to-day with purpose while pursuing the passions God has placed in our hearts is a delicate pursuit. In this refreshing, insightful book, Kathi lays out a doable plan that makes sense and helps make our God-given dreams a reality. Never stop dreaming, because women who dare to dream do make the world a better place.

—Jean Blackmer
author of MomSense: A Common Sense Guide to Confident Mothering
Publishing Manager, MOPS International

Read this fantastic short article about Kick Starting Your Dreams.

Grand Prize Giveaway:
Deluxe Starbucks Coffee Gift Basket
Three 2.5-oz. bags of Starbucks coffee
(Sumatra, House Blend, and French Roast)
Tazo black tea
Starbucks marshmallow cocoa
Almond roca
Almond roca buttercrunch toffee cookies
White chocolate and raspberry cookies
2 Starbucks mugs
Keepsake black bamboo basket
$62 value

Kathi Lipp is a busy conference and retreat speaker, currently speaking each year to thousands of women throughout the United States. She is the author of The Husband Project and The Marriage Project, serves as food writer for Nickelodeon, and has had articles published in several magazines, including Today’s Christian Woman and Discipleship Journal. Kathi and her husband, Roger, live in California and are the parents of four teenagers and young adults. For more information visit her website:

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Love of God...

Our church theme for this year is "Love Will Find a Way", based on 2 Cor. 5:14 - The love of Christ constraineth (motivates) us. I am falling in love with this verse.

I find it applicable in every area of life....from dealing with my attitudes (good or bad), to dealing with difficult people, to sharing the gospel, to doing ministry....this verse covers it all. If the love of God motivates my every single movement, then Christ will be reflected in my life. Some of the simplest areas of my life are great starting points for practicing this verse. My home, my preschool class, my relationships with others...not to mention my marriage, my finances, my spare time...and the list goes on and on and on.

I want His love to be the motivation for every single thing I do. In the's all that really matters....others seeing and experiencing Jesus.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


On the way to school and church we travel a street where old, beautiful houses stand shoulder to shoulder. Sidewalks line the front yards and pretty, yet simple landscapes decorate each yard with shades of green and pinks and yellows. The turn of the century homes (1900's) are delightful, a real gem against the more modern homes this century boasts.

Yet, somewhere in the beauty I missed this one particularly gorgeous home....until recently. The reason I missed it? It was overgrown with unkept shrubs, trees that needed trimming and weeds. I don't know if it had been abandoned and recently reclaimed or if the warmer weather just happened to motivate the owners to spruce up the place, but regardless, the recent cleaning up, tree trimming, weed pulling is appreciated by house stalkers like myself!

It's unbelievable the difference the yard care is making on this property. The other day when I was on my way to school I saw a professional tree trimming service cutting off dead limbs, trimming away debris and shaping up some of the older more prestigious trees. I have no idea what a job like that would cost...but I am sure it cost something. As I went home from school that day and saw the progress being made, I was stunned. The front door could be seen from the road. The deep, rich, dark brick of the two story home was stately. I was soon coveting  wishing I lived there!

This home stumbled into my thoughts again this week as I was reading Psalm 51:10:

Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me.

On a daily basis I need a heart makeover. I need a professional trimming service to come in a clean up all the debris, dead stuff and maybe underneath all that there will be a slight glimmer of growth that can be nurtured and shaped up. Lately I've been more aware of what this sprucing up costs. The cost that was paid on a cross for all of this...the life that was given in place of my own, the grace that I walk in daily, the extreme love that is making over my life....leaves me breathless and choked up as I write this. Oh What a Savior!!! Thank you for saving this dilapidated soul from ruin.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Get Off the Treadmills

Dear Gym Enthusiasts,

Last night I had plans to walk 3 miles on the treadmill at the gym. However, even after waiting until later than usual to walk, all the treadmills were full. Skinny people, fat people, runners, joggers, woggers, walkers, men, women, elderly and young....hogging the treadmills!!! My word....after 20 minutes of waiting don't you think someone would have tired??? Do you all have Jillian Michaels screaming in your ear buds??? This girl needs to walk!!!

So, needless to say, my friend and I drove away...without one mile under our belts. Tomorrow night when I return, I hope you'll be more generous. If not, it's gonna be ugly. Consider yourself warned.

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Inside Out Pics

If you know me at all you know that I will do just about anything to avoid taking a picture. I have mastered most of the tricks in the book.... put children in front of me, chin up, hide behind others, wear all the one to take the name it...I've tried it. Well, I've decided this isn't a way to live. I want to have pictures of me and my kids and Bruce together and since the main reason that I haven't taken lots of pics of us together is because of my physical appearance....(weight issues) I've decided to face my fears right here (my apologies in advance) and document this weight loss journey in photos periodically.

The top picture is of me on Christmas Eve of 2010 and the bottom picture is of me on February 12, 2011. I've lost 17 pounds between the photos....but I can't really tell that much of a difference on the outside....but oh wow...the changes happening on my inside. That's what really matters the most anyway. So, maybe by next month there will be more visible notice...but for now, I find it hard to even convey in words what God is teaching me through the process of surrender.

Meal Plan Monday

This week my family will be eating....

Monday: Pizza (I will be eating Kashi's brand)
Tuesday: Lemon Herb Chicken w/whole grain pasta, Green Beans, Fruit
Wednesday: Subway (I will be eating a veggie sub)
Thursday: Turkey Sausage and chipolte roasted sweet potatoes and veggies, pineapple
Friday: Turkey Dogs, Whole Grain Mac and Cheese

What's cookin' in your kitchen?

Prayer for Lilly Part 2

Last week I asked you to please remember sweet little 3yo Lilly in your prayers as she went for her first appointment at Texas Children's Hospital. Well, that appointment resulted in an MRI appointment for Monday (today) at noon. Would you please lift her up to the Lord? I know her family would appreciate it. I will update as I know something. Thanks!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Unlikely Worship Part 2

I loaded the Pandora App to my iphone yesterday. My world is a better place for it. I added a few channels to my already established account and was anticipating enjoying them the next time I went to the gym.

So at 6:40 this morning...when the alarm went off ( is SATURDAY!) I got ready and hit the treadmill at the gym. The treadmills are right in front of the tinted glass window at the fitness center and since I've never been at the gym at 6:40 I wasn't prepared for what I saw.

I had just put the ear buds in and cranked the Matt Papa channel (if you haven't discovered Matt must...he has a free download every month on his site....go now!) when I happened to glance outside and witness what I do believe to be one of the most beautiful sunrises ever! Maybe it's the fact that it's been blistering cold and cloudy here for a while but it was by far a moment to be remembered. As I worked out for the next few minutes I got to watch God show His handiwork off. The slow rise of glorious yellow light illuminated the sky and as God's painting filled the sky I was overwhelmed with the thought.... if God can place this earth in His Hand and the sun and moon and stars and planets in place....then I really do believe He can transform this physical body to be what it needs to be to glorify Him. His creation ought to bring Him glory....the sun was doing its part this morning...and in a small I worked out...I think I might have been doing mine.

After a few bad days of no workout and less than perfect eating, I needed to be nudged in this direction.

Friday, February 11, 2011

A is for Apple

Let me explain...I have never had a fancy smancy fact I have almost ridiculed Bruce for his love of his Blackberry. Well, my little phone began randomly turning off and on about 3 months ago..and I spilt a diet coke on it and then dropped I thought then I would go get a blackberry or something like that. Then I realized I had a $100 upgrade coming if I could wait just 3 months....and there was rumor that the iphone was coming to Verizon. So I waited...and if that waiting resulted in me missing a phone call from you...I apologize. I was just to close to joining the apple family....I had to wait!!!

So now I have my iphone...and he has his...and we are a happy Apple family....and just so you know....the eight year old in our house is giving us tutorials! How do they know so much???

So...if you have a favorite app (see look at me using all the hip apple lingo :).....please let me know what it is...and why I need it!!!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for:

1. Health...Tucker has battled something for weeks now and finally I think we might be on the mend. His color is getting better, he's acting more like his old self and he hasn't had a fever in 48 hours.

2. Health...Mine...the meds that the dr. put me on are working and so nothing serious (meaning surgery or worse) has to be done at this time. This is a relief and also buys me a little time to research and figure out the best options for me.

3. Motivation....sometimes you need a good kick in the pants to get things going. I've had that recently and although painful, on the other side it's a real blessing.

4. Two special friends who have birthdays this week...I'm thrilled to be a part of their lives and so blessed to have their friendship, wisdom and love in my life.

5. The youth group at church. They've stolen my heart...and as God has seen fit, just about the time I realized how much I loved them....our church hired a new youth pastor. I'm happy that our youth will have someone solely devoted to them, but sad that we won't share that closeness with them like we have the last 6 months or so. They are a special group...God's got big things in store for out world!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Proverbs 9 -Correction

Proverbs 9: 7 Whoever corrects a mocker invites insults; 
   whoever rebukes the wicked incurs abuse. 8 Do not rebuke mockers or they will hate you;
   rebuke the wise and they will love you. 
9 Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still;
   teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.

Have you ever been corrected by someone? Depending on what kind of mood I am in can really influence how I take the correction. According to Proverbs 9:7-9, a wise person takes correction and grows from it. It really doesn't matter what kind of mood I am in, or even who is doing the correction, I can learn something. 

I also noticed in these verses that they ward against spending to much time correcting the foolish (mocker, wicked). In fact it warns that you could be insulted or abused for it. The fact is it is better to be wise and corrected, than to be foolish and abusing. Anyway you look at it, wise people know how to take correction, instructions and rebuke. They will grow, learn and apply the correction and discipline to their life. 

That's the kind of person I want to be. Yes, it hurts our pride a bit when we are corrected. Yes, it might knock us down a notch of two...but in the scheme of things I'd rather be teachable, moldable and ready to grasp hold of the things God has for me, than too proud to accept that I don't know it all. 

I wanna be wise...taking hold of the truths of God's Word.

Do You Have Cabin Fever?

I know I do!!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Proverbs 8- Can You Hear Me Now?

Proverbs of my favorites. 

Does not wisdom call out? 

It seems like I am always wondering the next step to take, wishing I had the answers, worrying if I am being a godly parent....How often do I need a good dose of wisdom!

Wisdom isn't about being intelligent, it's about being still enough to hear and obey the voice of the one who knows it all.

That's what chapter 8 is all about. Wisdom isn't hiding in the bushes or underneath the bed. It's readily's crying out for us to take hold of it. So many times we wonder why we can't hear what God wants for us. Here are a few common roadblocks to finding wisdom...

1. Not asking for it. We will worry, fret, talk to a friend, re-hash our circumstances...but what about just asking God for wisdom to deal with them. James chapter 1 deals with this topic.

2. We want our own way. We might want to "say" we've sought God's opinion about a matter...but in reality what we really want is to have our own way.

3. We don't want to get still enough to hear God's voice about a matter. Getting still is uncomfortable for some people. It's hard to get real with God....but don't worry about it...He already knows the real you.

4. We are lazy. Sorry...but it's true. I sometimes don't have the wisdom I need because I have been too lazy to get in His Word and see what it says regarding a matter.

5. We don't want to know what God has to say about the issue. We know we are sinning...but we like it so we don't want to ask God for His advice on the matter.

Please don't think I'm pointing fingers...these are ALL issues I have/am/will face. It's terribly revealing to write them all out...and a little shameful. With God's wisdom being so readily available I am ashamed that I don't seek it more diligently. 

What if....

1. Before I asked a friend for advice I asked God for wisdom?

2. Before I complained about a matter I asked God for wisdom?

3. Before I worried about a situation I asked God for wisdom?

My world might look a little different. Don't mistake what I am saying. God gives wise counsel, good books, great music, a good friend....but ultimately Wisdom comes from HIS WORD...HIS PRESENCE...HIS VOICE. Nothing can take the place of HIM.

Prayer for Lilly---UPDATE

Friends of ours are making a trip to Texas Children's Hospital today with their three year old daughter, Lilly. She has a tumor in her leg and they will be meeting with an oncologist. Would you please say a prayer for God to be glorified and this sweet family to be strengthened? I will update you as I know something. Thank You!

*** UPDATE: From Lilly's Parents:
Lilly update - Just got out of the dr office. They re-did her X-rays & did blood work. Orthopedic, radiologist & oncologist couldn't diagnose. MRI Monday. Another appointment on Tuesday with    Oncologist.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday Meal Plan

Here's what's for dinner at our home this week?

Monday: Steaks...Bruce is grilling. I will have a salad with mine.
Tuesday: Soup and Sandwiches, with fruit.
Wednesday: Subway
Thursday: Pizza Bake with Salad
Friday: Fajitas

I will be doing major portion control this week. I'm trying to cook from what I have on this will be a bit of a challenge for my self control.

Tell me, what's cooking at your house?

Proverbs 7- Stay Away

I'm beginning to sense a theme is these last few chapters of Proverbs. Today the majority of the chapter is spent warning young men to wise up and stay away from the adulterous woman. In the first few verses there is the "if you do this...then this will happen". I love that so many of the proverbs give us principles like this one so we can see the benefits of doing what God commands. Look here:

1 My son, keep my words
   and store up my commands within you. 
2 Keep my commands and you will live;
   guard my teachings as the apple of your eye. 
3 Bind them on your fingers;
   write them on the tablet of your heart. 
4 Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,”
   and to insight, “You are my relative.” 
5 They will keep you from the adulterous woman,
   from the wayward woman with her seductive words.

This is the key principle discussed in this chapter. If you obey God's Word, listen to wisdom, keep it close to your heart, it (wisdom) will guide you and keep you far from the seductiveness of this world. This passage talks specifically about adultery, but really, couldn't it be anything, any type of sin? If I read, memorize and meditate on God's Word, His principles, then I am far less likely to be distracted or drawn away from the things that I know don't please Him. That's what the principle is here.

I am so thankful that God always provides a way out of temptation. Here He gives us the recipe for success. Embrace Godly, biblical wisdom and use it to stay away from the temptations and snares of this world. 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

My Kind of Super Bowl

Hope your Super Bowl Sunday is just as beautiful!

Proverbs 6- Things God Hates

In my opinion, Proverbs 6 is not a feel good chapter of the Bible. So, if you're looking for a sweet little post might want to hop on over to another blog. Truth is....sometimes we all need a little toe stepping, wake up call type message from God. It feels like this is what is happening in this chapter. insect that most of the time we do our best to exterminate...but funny....God wants us to stop and examine them. They are busy, organized, hard working, wise little creatures. Solomon instructs us to learn from them. He mentions that they have no one lording over them to be sure they do the right thing, yet they do. He mentions that they store up for winter which indicates that their business is worthwhile...not spent on doing things that are frivolous.

Then he goes on to talk about the things God hates. YIKES. Hate is such a strong word....and I guess that is why it's used here....summed up these are the list of things God hates:

1. Pride
2. Lying
3. Murder of the Innocent
4. Scheming, Wicked Heart
5. Feet that rush to do evil things
6. False witness-- someone who lies to hurt others
7. A Person who stirs up conflict in a community

I dare say we can all attest to participating in one of more of these things sometime in our life. I was thinking about this passage of scripture and how that maybe if I acted more like the ANT I would act less like these 7 things. If I was busy doing worthwhile things, perhaps I would have less time to do things that God hates. Perhaps if I was looking toward the future (eternity)...there would be less time for me to worry about today. 

Then towards the end of the chapter Solomon revisits the issue of adultery. Again I am reminded that God has placed a high standard for purity in marriage. It makes perfect sense considering it's the same picture- the church(the bride) is to Christ(the groom). Pure, holy, undefiled, beautiful. The bride of Christ. 

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Proverbs 5- The Importance of Purity

I was reading Proverbs 5 this morning and a couple of things jumped off the page at me:

God is concerned with our actions in marriage. One man and one woman is clearly defined in this passage of scripture. But before I start patting myself on the back let's look at this more clearly.

Is being infatuated in our minds with another man any different than adultery? Is allowing ourselves to be emotionally connected with someone other than our spouse any different than an affair? What about communicating with someone more than we do our spouse? Are we setting ourselves up for problems?

I'm reminded in this passage of how influenced men are by women....Solomon (the author) talks about the speech, path and body of a woman. He warns men against all women but a man's own wife. He also talks about the shame and loss of dignity a man has at the end of his days if he isn't faithful to his own wife.

At the end of the passage Solomon reminds us that God sees it all....verse 21 says: For your ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all your paths. So, we see here that however we act in will be seen by God. 

How this spoke to me:

1. As a wife, I have the responsibility to keep my own mind and heart resolved to purity in my marriage. Things that draw my focus to other men are sin. My heart, soul and body should rest in the heart of my husband so there is not one doubt in his mind that he is loved, secure and safe right here in our marriage.

2. I need to guard against any relationship that would in any way give another man any impression that a close relationship would be welcome. Since men are affected by body, path and speech, I need to guard myself in these areas. Dress appropriately, speak clearly and be visible to others (never alone with another man).

3. I need to be my husband's biggest all things. This passage says....REJOICE with the wife of your youth. can he rejoice if I am always nagging, complaining, comparing, degrading? So I need to honor him with praise, compliments, affection and love. This is a great example for my kids to see too!

All these things will help to maintain purity in my marriage. The pain of adultery, porn, emotional affairs, and divorce is a heavy burden for anyone to bear. As a wife, I need to do my part to ensure I have a solid marriage. What my husband does after between him and His omniscient God. I am responsible to that same God for my actions too.

Friday, February 4, 2011

February Goals

Goal's Biblical. Run the toward the on.... Proverbs 13:16 says,"A wise man thinks ahead; a fool doesn't and even brags about it!" So with that in mind, here are a few goals I have for the month of February.


  1. Read the book of Proverbs and journal the things the Lord points out to me.
  2. Read The Me Project by Kathi Lipp

  1. Walk 50 Miles
  2. Eat Healthy
  3. Lose 5 pounds (at least)

  1. Pray with kids more...not just at bedtime or meals. More when disciplining and teaching and correcting.
  2. Edify and pray for Bruce more.
  3. Teach Savannah to scramble eggs.
  4. Get new tires for Tucker's bike and help him learn to ride without training wheels.
  5. Continue Meal Plans

  1. Organize laundry room.
  2. Get back porch ready for spring.
  3. Buy Easter decorations for year round tree and decorated by end of month.
  4. Change Air-Heat Filters Out

  1. Save money for missions conference.
  2. Coupon more.
  3. Get the kids Savings Accounts transferred to SS

So now that this is all neatly typed out, I guess I should get busy and start on something. 

I'd love to hear what you're working on for the month. Leave a comment below!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for:

1. The cold weather!.... requiring my family to spend more time together... indoors. I'm loving all the fun!

2. The way God's peace can rain down in the midst of such uncertainty.

3. Friends who encourage.

4. The opportunity to go to Peru this summer on a mission trip. Thankful for family who will watch my kids while Bruce and I are gone.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Rolling Blackouts

Today North and East Texans (and possibly elsewhere) experienced what electric companies call "rolling blackouts". The power goes off alternately for about 15 minutes or so and then comes back on. It's all planned and there's nothing to worry about...well unless you're in the middle of baking homemade bread, drying your hair or taking a breathing treatment. Anyway, it's nearly harmless....but, boy have I heard people complain like all get out today.

It's 15 minutes people!!!! I happened to have been thrilled when the rolling blackout happened at school. I had just walked in the door at about 7:40am and poof there went the power. I immediately started dreaming of how I was going to spend another day at home. Organizing? Crafting? Redecorating? Cooking? The list was coming along quite nicely when Bruce came through the building with the bad  news that the power would be back on momentarily. And it did. Darn.

This afternoon as I was checking Facebook and email I read many comments about the loss of power today. Some not so nice...some funny...and some down right mean towards the electric companies. Then it hit me. We quickly become dissatisfied when we lose "power". When we have no control over the who is making decisions and the power is randomly on and off it's frustrating. often do we purposely unplug from the power of Jesus Christ (you knew this was coming)....we stop reading His Word, we distance ourselves from the fellowship of other believers, we skip a few church services and then a few more, we spend more time complaining about the sermon, the pastor, the church than we do lifting them up in prayer, we become dissatisfied, angry. WE UNPLUG. And most of the time, we don't think about the consequences of this power failure in our life. And time goes by....and we grow cold, chilled toward the things of Christ, cool towards the body of Christ, and frigid in our actions, attitudes and spirit. WE'VE UNPLUGGED.

The good news is that getting plugged back in is super easy. Confession starts the spark for the renewed energy we can have when we realize that we've distanced ourselves from the power source. God is perfectly capable of restoring the power....HIS power to our lives. Isn't that reassuring? He doesn't need 15 minutes to restore's instantly. For that....I am completely thankful. There have been so many times where I've unplugged because I thought I knew what was best for me....I wanted to avoid unpleasant things, people, I distance myself from those things and dealing with those things....and in essence I distanced myself from the power source...and in the long run, I was affected more negatively by the power failure than if I had dealt with those hardships within the power of God's strength.

So....get plugged in and stay there....there is no power outage when you are safe in the shelter of God's hand.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


There is a pot roast, complete with carrots, potatoes and onions, simmering in the crockpot as I type up this post. The smell is delicious. I'm in my flannel pants, the fireplace is warming up the house and the smell of freshly brewed coffee struggles to beat out the smell of dinner. Kids are watching Enchanted, Bruce is at work (poor guy), laundry is tossing in the dryer (as always), snow is falling and I am browsing...channels, magazines and blogs. It's a warm snuggly kind of day where you don't dare open the door for fear of freezing your socks off!

I needed today. A day where there was no agenda, no deadlines, nothing pressing. Just me and my kids, something yummy to eat and time to just be. Doesn't everyone?

Hope you're staying cozy warm and all snuggly wherever you are today!