Pages

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

What did you do?!

2013 is quickly coming to an end. Weren't we just starting to write 2013 instead of 2012 on our checks? Now I need to remember 2014. Oh, the pain and agony!

Let's see if I, Miss Forgetful One, can remember what our 2013 looked like....

January

What I remember of January is Dancer Daughter flying for the first time, ever, overseas to several third-world countries to start her outreach portion of her ministry. January consisted of me waiting to hear from her (which I did), praying for her and her team as well as the other teams in other locations, and throw in a wee-bit of worry for good measure (as any good mom would do).

February

I would imagined it snowed. And I think I would be safe to say it was a short month. And, I deep cleaned our home (see below).

March

Dancer Daughter flew back to the states. Then it was the state-side tour where they went to home churches and other places to give programs and volunteer. We hosted Dancer Daughter's team for 2 nights and it was a marvelous experience. So polite, so nice, so humorous and wonderful human beings. A week later found us traveling 3 states away to attend her graduation from the program and bringing her home.

April

I think it is safe to say we had some rain. After all, April showers bring May flowers. It is also a month of birthdays. Hubs, my dad's (86), and Firefighter Boy. Let's just say Dairy Queen makes some money off of us this month!

May

25 years. Hubs & I were married 25 years in May. To celebrate we spent the night at a 'fancier' hotel nearby. It was a very nice time away. There is just something about going away from home every now and then. And, since we rarely go away...it was nice. I'm sure there were flowers blooming and it was warming up. Ahhh, I just love May...not too hot and not too cold. Perfect temps. Although the barn swallows swoop and scare me to death! Seriously, it's like they know I'm scared of them! And, if birds aren't scary enough, Firefighter Boy passed his driving test and became a licensed driver. I'm old. Yup, let's just get that out of the way right now.

June

I'm sure I was sweating at some point during this month. I think it is safe to say the sun ever shone and partied until at least 9 p.m. Just like me. ;) Skunks. Wetlands close by. Nuff said.

July

Another sweaty month and I'm sure we used the pool. I'm sure we swatted bugs. We may or may not have gone all ninja on a few pesky ones. Firefighter Boy ended himself in AZ during the hottest time to be in AZ. He was attended a church conference. Nothing against the planners but who thought AZ in July was a good idea?

August

This is the time of year where many are saying, "Where has the summer gone?!" I'm sure I was one of those people. And, Mr. Woodchuck paid us a visit. It was a fun 2 hours really. It involved much yelling, banging of pan to scare him off (my bad idea), tennis ball shooter, baseball bats and soft baseballs. We have a video of our efforts but it shall remain hidden until I die.

September

There's the county fair...which we spent about 3 hours there. Firefighter Boy spent more hours there since he is part of a fire explorer program. The area Fire Departments are assigned a day where the department is at the fairgrounds for any emergency. He just loves this program and hanging out with them. And, I was in denial that I might need to find my spring/fall coat. Skunks...again. This time underneath our bedroom window. Fun. Fun times to be had by all.

October

Two more birthdays...within 5 days of one another. Writer/Cos Daughter and Dancer Daughter. DQ loves us. Christmas decorations and commercials begin to appear. Slow down, Retailers! And, I was still in denial about the coat wearing thing. I may or may not have had a day or three of mourning over having to wear shoes instead of flip flops or sandals. Another sad day in my life.

November

Leaf raking was in full swing. Getting colder is top priority for Mr. November. How rude. I finally accepted the fact that I needed to find my winter coat and perhaps actually wear it. It was a very sad day really.

December

Snow. White fluffy snow. Ick. I mean really, it is okay for Christmas but then I'm pretty much over it. Yes, I realize I live in Ohio. There's gonna be snow outside. Oh, and I guess I should mention it is my birthday month. We really didn't do anything because we were in the middle of a storm ON my birthday. Thanks, December, for stepping on my birthday plans. Isn't enough I have to put up with, "Here is your birthday AND Christmas gift."??? This is also the year I decided we are going to celebrate my birthday in June or July. My luck we'll probably have a tornado to step on our plans. ;)

I'm positive there are events in which I can't remember at the moment. Isn't life funny that way. 2013 has had it ups and downs and many moments of stress. But isn't that what life is about? We lean on God through the good and bad. He is our rock.

What are a few things that stand out in your life in 2013?



Monday, December 23, 2013

Silence

Early one morning, four years ago, I awoke to the dialog at the bottom of this post running through my head. 

It started me thinking about how nuts I get around this time of year. And, what I really crave is silence. Silence and time. Time to think. Time to enjoy. Instead, I feel torn in a hundred different directions. 

(True story, freebie and ADD detour: One Sunday our pastor suggested we write something down on our sermon notes. He gave us a few minutes and then said, "I know everyone doesn't like silence." or something like that. My immediate thought was "said no introvert ever!" )

Last year, there wasn't a tree. No Christmas cookies. Very, very minimal decorations (yes, the kids were fine with it). I found no guilt in this. Instead, I enjoyed time with family and friends. No one cared I didn't make cookies or candy. No one missed the Christmas tree. No, we weren't Scrooges. Instead, it focused us on the real meaning and reason for this special holiday. It was really freeing. 

If you're feeling torn in many directions, consider ways you can cut back during this season. What can you eliminate so you can focus on Christ? It's okay not to do one thing you've done every year and now it's become an obligation.

Let your imagination flow as you read the writing below. 
Merry Christmas and may your focus be on Christ.



Cows mooing
Sheep baaing
Goats bleating
Merchants talking
Birds chirping
People yelling
Children laughing
Hens clucking
Mothers scolding
Fathers working

~Silence~

God’s Angel speaking, 

“The Lord has chosen you, Mary. He is with you always.”

Mary gasps.

“Don’t be afraid or surprised. God has a big job for you and you are the one to carry it through. You will be with child through the Holy Spirit and you will name him Jesus. He will be a great man and will be called the Son of the Most High. His Kingdom will never end.”

Mary pacing, “What? How can this be? I am a virgin, it is impossible!” 
Hands wringing. 

“Nothing is impossible with God, Mary.”
Closing eyes and smiling, “I am the Lord’s servant. Let everything you've said happen to me.” 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Cars honking 
Shoppers pushing
Dirty dishes sitting
Radios blaring
Television watching
Schedules demanding
Cell phone ringing
Computers calling
Laundry waiting
Factories roaring
Children crying
Text messaging

~Silence~


May we make time to hear God’s voice and, like Mary, answer, “I am the Lord’s servant.”

Monday, December 16, 2013

Dear Santa,

My poor-pitiful-me-self wants many things this year for Christmas. To summarize, I'd just like what seems like everything we own to stop breaking down.

A car, a van, a microwave, a crockpot, a toaster oven...and more. That's all. It seems so simple after all. No more wondering where the money is going to come from and/or deciding if we can actually replace said items. And, Santa, it's really not fun to have all those things break down in a matter of a 2 month time span. Seriously. And, if you can't make everything stop breaking down then many dollar bills would be very nice.

I'm really quite stressed at the moment. So if your elves could just make all of this stop, I'd be grateful.

Then, my sensible-stop-being-selfish-and-think-of-others-self realizes these problems aren't really problems. Just inconveniences and money-sucking things.

There are people hurting. Hurting from depression, missing a child, a child lost to death, a husband or wife who left, cancer and illness, death of a loved one...

There are young children and adults in our country and many other countries who are sold into slavery through human trafficking. People in the world who do not have clean drinking water, or a place to call their very own.

The list of human needs could go on and on. And here I am in my warm house, typing on my own computer getting sucked into all the material things when material things are just that...things.

What I really want for Christmas, Santa, is for you and your elves to join me in praying to our Lord to help us all to realize what a really problem looks like and how we can be His vessels at home and around the world.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

If I Were Truly Honest

If I were truly honest I would tell you motherhood is hard. I would imagine fatherhood is difficult as well but since I'm a mom we'll just go with motherhood at the moment.

Babies are such a blessing. The wonderful baby smell. Her first smile. First laugh, first look at the world. Wonderment at God's creation - your child.

As wonderful as those are, there are times of overwhelming exhaustion. Suddenly that wonderful smell turns into a stinky diaper. Her smile still melts your heart but when your little one suddenly becomes mobile, you suddenly turn into a marathon runner. 

And getting to church on time and in the "proper mood", yeah well, forget it. Be thankful there isn't spit up on your church cloths before you even get there.

Then there is the pressure of being a good mom. Being present. Being a super-mom (a lie to make us feel guilty) and doing it all with a smile. And when you feel like a 'failure' because you didn't know that cry meant ear infection, guilt sets in.

Let me burst your bubble right now. You can't be all to everyone. Don't let pride get in your way of asking for help. All moms have been a new mom and/or a mom or toddlers (by the way...it's the terrible threes not the terrible twos!). We know you need a break or just someone who will listen.

If you choose to work outside the home, it's okay. If you choose to stay home (that is work, too), it's okay. Don't compare yourself with any other mother. Don't listen to Great Aunt Deanna's advice when it may have worked for her family but it really doesn't hold true for yours. It's okay.

You will be torn in many directions. Your husband, your child, your work, your church, your extended family, eventually the school system, and the expectations you put on yourself. It's okay to step back and evaluate. Don't let your expectations of what a mom should look like push you into things you hate. Don't let other's expectations push you into something in which you don't have a passion or desire to do.

Always, always turn to Christ. You can't do it on your own.

When you're rocking your crying baby and wishing she came with a paper read-out flowing out of her forehead to tell you what is really wrong, pray for wisdom and discernment. And listen. Not to the crying but to God's whisper in your heart. He'll guide you.

Before the time comes when discipline is the course of action, pray. Pray for God's wisdom in discerning what action to take with each particular child. (because let me tell you, what works for one won't work for the other) The heat of the moment is no place to decide how you'll discipline. Discipline with love not anger. And when you do let anger take over, and it will, don't beat yourself up. (and I'm not talking physical or emotional abuse - there's no excuse for that!) Calm yourself down (put your child in a safe place and remove yourself from the situation by going into another room to breathe deeply) because the next minute of each day is new and a great time to start over again.

You'll worry. I know the Bible tells us not to worry. But, let me tell you. That worry will increase your prayer life ten-fold and more.

Don't be afraid to say 'no'. No to outside commitment when that commitment will take too much time away from your family. No when a child does something wrong. No when that child wants something others have and your wallet screams no. No is not a bad word. God tells us 'no'. A boss will say 'no'. The world will have no problem at yelling 'no'. Preparing your child with 'no' is not abuse or harmful for her self esteem.

My advice, if you were asking for it, is be consistent when raising your little one(s). Consistent with unconditional love. Consistent with discipline. Consistent with character training. Consistent with teaching God's Word.

This mom thing is hard. Mothers of teens will tell new moms "just wait until they are teenagers". Not helpful seasoned mom, not helpful at all. Every stage has it's joys and frustrations. Savor each one.


There's nothing like a newborn baby falling asleep on your chest. Cuddling that sweet little human. Smelling that 'new baby smell'. Rocking, singing and enjoying God's blessing.

When your school-aged child finally 'gets it' after weeks of frustration, you'll rejoice and breathe a sigh of relief right along with them. When baby teeth just won't come out on their own and need to be pulled, you'll pray for God to remove your child's nervousness and give it all to you.

And when they do become teens and young adults, you'll enjoy each of their personalities. You'll see in them the gifts God has given them. You'll encourage and nurture their passions and dreams. You'll shed tears as they accomplish goals and surprises of life. Tears will fall when you walk past her room and she is happily packing her suitcase for a long-term mission trip or college. You'll have so many mixed feelings. Happy and excited for her but sad for yourself because you really like your kid and will miss her.

Savor each stage and each year. It isn't a lie when moms tell you it will go fast. One day you're bringing home a wee one and wondering if the hospital was really supposed to let you bring home this baby because you really haven't a clue what you're doing. The next moment your children are saying, "see ya" as they head out the door. Savor and enjoy each moment. You won't regret it.

*the use of "her/she" was not meant to exclude all the he/hims in the world...just a short cut so I wouldn't need to type he/she, him/her...or maybe I'm just lazy. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Life as I know it

How was your Thanksgiving? I know it has been almost a full week since the carb loving holiday. If you are like me, that day is a little fuzzy due to the carb overload. Which, honestly, I love!

Last year, I prepared a turkey using a wet brine. This year I had this crazy idea to mix things up and try a dry brine since all I heard this year was dry brine, dry brine, dry brine. My conclusion? Dry brine is easier and less messy. While it still is moist, the turkey I made last year with wet brine was more moist. I think, IF I cook another turkey in my life time, it will be wet brine all the way. Lesson for the day: don't go with the crowd.

Dancer Daughter decorated. And yes.
Yes, those are scanners in the background.
Firefighter Boy "needs" them. Welcome to my life.
And, since I am in a sharing kind of mood (insert whinny mood), my toe hurts. I mean really hurts. This little piggy who went to market is quite fat. Now, before rumors begin among the four people who read this blog, I don't drink alcohol so I don't believe it is gout. Although I do know gout is caused by other things. I'm walking like a peg-legged pirate. Thaaat's right. I'm just missing the patch over my eye, Matey.

Maybe it's just me, but when there is an unexplained happening with my body I begin envisioning all the terrible health issues in the world today. Like flesh eating bacteria issues.  Or maybe it's just me.

You're so welcome. I know you have been waiting all of your life for a blog post such as this. Now your life won't get any better than this after reading such a riveting post. It's almost like I ruined you for any other pleasurable blog post. Almost.

How's your Christmas decorating going? We are going very minimalistic this year. Read: table decoration and a miniature tree. Which is better than last year when we had nothing decorative. And no. I don't feel guilty about last year one.single.bit. I focused on relationships more than decorations or baking last year and loved it. Loved.it. And, just because I like you, here is a link for a free ebook download by John Piper of daily Advent readings. You're welcome, again.

We are on an extremely tight budget this year. Extremely. You know. Things happen. Like a car breaking down in the middle of a city kind of things. And for some reason not known to man-kind, the mechanic expects a payment. I know. How rude. (just kidding!)

So I need to dust off my creativity hat. Yes, I could, if I chose, to look at pinterest. But, frankly, pinterest makes me tired. And sad. Unless there is a good tried and true recipe or handy dandy tip. But when I see all of those crafts...well, frankly, been there and done that when the children where little. Now it just makes me think how much work it would be to make this or that. Maybe it's that flesh eating bacteria eating away my energy. Yup, bet that's it. It has nothing to do with getting old. We are blaming the bacteria and that's that!

This year our extended family is giving Christmas decorations to a shelter. Decorations could be new or nicely used. Last night I finally worked up the nerve to enter the attic where said items are kept. I do not like my attic. No I do not. I do not like it when it is dark. I do not like it when it is cold. I do not like it I said a little too bold.

So I kindly asked (read ordered) hubs and Firefighter Boy to help. Let's just say it involved flashlights, a Nerf gun and yelling "cover me"! However, while we were psyching ourselves to open the attic door, Writer Girl decides to take the lead and marches right on up those stairs without a care in the world. Show off.

IF you have stuck with me through all the fascinating information above, I just feel the need to hug you. But, that would be awkward so my present to you is this video. It totally cracked me up this morning. Or maybe it is just the three Advil I popped this morning for my little swollen piggy. Enjoy some good holiday humor. Or not. I'm not the boss of you.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Getting to know you...

...getting to know all about you...♪♫

There is a game, if you will, on facebook where a person lists a number of things about oneself in the status box. If you like the person's status, he or she will assign you a number. Then you will need to write that many things about yourself.

While normally I skip through a person's status if it has a list, I really enjoy reading them these and learning more about that person. Guess what is on the agenda for today's blog post.

While you know a bit about me through the 'About' tab at the top of this page, here are a few fun facts for you to chew on.


  1. Even though I'm the youngest, I don't consider myself spoiled. Seriously, I asked my dad and he said I wasn't spoiled so therefore it must be true. ;)
  2. I'm a secret wannabe writer who would love to see her name on a cover of a novel. But it is so much work. It is hard than just sitting down and typing out a plot. There is research involved. Proper grammar. People to bring to life and perhaps kill off. 
  3. I've started 3 novels and have yet to complete one. (hangs her head in shame)
  4. I flew for the first time when I was 19. To California. Second flight was in 2009 to Floida. I've been grounded ever since. 
  5. I'm an introvert who has learned to fake it in the world as an extrovert. Unless I don't know you very well then I'm totally an introvert. I want others to make the first 'move'. And, I hate crowds. 
  6. I'm insecure. Truly.
  7. I grew up in church. Got baptized in late elementary or jr high. Just went with the flow. It wasn't until we started having babies that my faith really grew and has been growing ever since.
  8. I have self-diagnosed, unmedicated ADD...or it could just be mom-brain. I would truly love to focus but...squirrel! I work in an office where everyone is in the same small room without partitions. It's hard. Very hard. Sometimes I just plug my ears to try to remember what I was doing before that last call or what I was just typing before someone started talking. It actually works....most of the time.
  9. When I was little I witnessed a tornado from a mile away. I'm not the biggest fan of tornadoes but have gotten better with not freaking out since having children.
  10. I'm scared of birds. Yes, let the comments begin. Yes, I know how many times birds are mentioned in a 'good' way in the Bible. I do enjoy hearing their pretty songs but in flight or on the ground....let's just say I've been known to use our children as a human shield. 
What are some things you'd like to share about yourself?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Grounds In My Coffee

There are grounds in my coffee. I have no idea how those pesky little specks of ground coffee bean magically appeared in my coffee this morning.

The grounds looked like they were having a fine-ole time swimming around as I stirred my just-added-flavored-creamer-coffee. So began the processes of fishing. Fishing out those specks. 

As I 'fished', I began to think how something so little could almost ruin a full mug of morning deliciousness. It's like the little foxes. No, not that fox...I really don't care what the fox says.

We had a guest pastor at our church years ago who spoke on marriage. He used Song of Solomon 2:15: 
Catch for us the foxes,
    the little foxes
that ruin the vineyards,
    our vineyards that are in bloom.
A fox is a small animal. Yet, even small animals can ruin a garden. 

Little things in life can fester building into a huge mess if we don't take care of it. Something annoying your spouse, children, friend or co-worker does can build and build until it becomes a giant issue. Relationships can be damaged. 

It is so easy to ignore a problem. I know from experience. I let little things grow until it is an uncontrollable problem. Then, I tend to blow a gasket and everyone around me suffers. It's embarrassing really. 

If I would have ignored the coffee grounds in my coffee I would have swallowed the grounds. It probably would have gone down on the bitter side. Ick! What makes me think the little problems that I stuff down and try to ignore aren't going to end up being bitter...scratch that....make ME bitter?

So, question of the day.... How do you handle it when "little grounds get in your coffee"? 




Friday, November 1, 2013

Overwhelmed with Thanksgiving

Two posts in one day?! Whaaaat?! ☺

I am overwhelmed with thanksgiving. Do you ever experience that feeling?

To be perfectly honest, I've had some rough weeks. And, this week got rougher.

A friend, who's like a sister, had to experience a call no parent should have to experience. That dreaded call of your child in an accident. That dreaded vehicle accident. You see, her daughter lives three hours away. That seems like thousands of miles away when your child is in the ER and goes into a serious surgery before the parents can get there.

We are celebrating life this week. Her daughter cannot move her legs, but she has feeling in both. For that, we hold on to hope.

Please join me in prayer as she recovers. Also, if you wouldn't mind, pray for traveling safety.

On top of the accident, things just seemed to go downhill in other areas of life. And when I felt sad and blue, I thought about my friend and her family. My hurt feelings and insecurities as a result were small and insignificant when matters of life and death were in my friend's life. Perspective. Perspective.

Last week a family in our community had a child pass away from a farming accident. It was less than a week later when my friend's daughter had her accident. Both the same age. My friend knew the family and couldn't stop thinking about the family after his death. And, when my friend sent me a text telling me about her daughter's accident, I feel the same way. I haven't been able to stop thinking about them. That is community. That is loving the way God intended.

I'm also thankful for unexpected blessings. As I was taking food to my friend's family, someone stopped by our house. (Hubs was home) This person freely gave us a gallon of cider. Now, it may seem like a small gesture to you. But not to me. You see, this person has no idea what is happening in our lives. This person, I believe, was obedient to God as our name popped in his head as he was driving by our house. I don't believe this person really knows God used him as a vessel of love and kindness. But, when I see this person, I'll tell him.

I'm thankful for all the people praying for this family. And, who will continue to lift them up in prayer to the feet of Jesus.

No one knows what the future will hold. Squeeze you loved ones a bit tighter and longer tonight.


Today is....

NaNoWriMo or NaNo for short. 

Have you heard of it? It is National Novel Writing Month. From November 1-30, writers are encouraged to write. Write long. Write hard. Write terrible. Write fast. Write slow. Just.Write.

Are you in? I was hoping to participate this year just for fun but life has a way of happening. Yes, I could make up my own NaNo month but I need accountability and discipline.

If you know of a young person who loves to write, there is a young person version called Camp NaNoWriMo.  It looks like it would be a really fun site to get the young excited about writing. 

In other news:

Thanksgiving is 26 days away. Last year I made my first-ever-full-size turkey. You can read of my adventures here. Last year our young said we (insert I) need to make the turkey again. Why is it the young don't realize how much work is involved. I think the young shall help this year! 

A baby shower is 37 days away!!! One of our nieces and her husband is having a baby. You know, a little human. That same little human who turns your life upside-down, inside-out and ruins you in a good way. I can't wait meet this younin' in person in February.  

Christmas is only 53 days away. 53 days, People! I know. Right?! I vote for making Christmas a simple day. A meaningful yet simple day. We get so busy running here, running there we lose focus on what the day truly represents. Christ's birth. Noel! Noel! But, instead it becomes running to this house and that and making sure we have all the presents. Nothing wrong with seeing our loved ones and giving a gift. Don't get me wrong. But, sometimes it overtakes what is really the meaning. Drops mic and walks away...


And, you're welcome for all this informative (read...boring) information. It's a good thing I am not participating in NaNo this year...as you can see, "I got nothin'"!


Monday, October 21, 2013

Do Not Lose Heart

Yes, there are many video clips in this post. But, so worth your time.

The first video, Though You Slay Me by Shane & Shane is new to me. I heard it last night at an area praise and worship time. It's not your typical praise and worship song. Last night before the band played their version of the song, a bit of this video starting at 3:24 was played. It is an audio clip of John Piper preaching. By hearing the audio clip before the song made the song so much more moving and meaningful to me. Take a listen...



To be honest, I've had this questioning in my mind. I know people in the Christian circle talk about God's plan and His directing history. I do understand and believe. But, when I hear people talk about it without acknowledging the sickening things going on in this world, the death of spouses and/or children, and many other hurts I just want to shout out "Where is God when a little girl is raped or when a child is killed by a mad-person?" I feel like we, Christians, are giving a pat answer without acknowledging the hurt.

I have faith. I do. And I soon come to my 'senses' after my 'mind outburst' (above). I know this world is not my home. I know pain and suffering are just part of this earth. And, last night, through the audio of the song (John Piper's at 3:24) my soul began to understand.

(This morning, in my quest to find the above video, I came across the story behind Though You Slay Me which is equally moving) 




And then I found this lovely song. I thought it went quite beautifully with the other videos....


Friday, October 18, 2013

Where [My] Feet May Fail

Have you heard this song yet? No? You NEED to hear it. You can thank me later. :)




Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)


You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You've never failed and You won't start now

So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior
[x6]

I will call upon Your Name
Keep my eyes above the waves
My soul will rest in Your embrace
I am Yours and You are mine

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Road Closed To Thru Traffic



I knew I would see a sign. My dad had warned me of the railroad crossing closure by his home.

Turning from one country road onto another, I noticed the sign. Cool! I can drive down the middle of the road and back into dad's driveway without worrying about another car.

Wrong. Lo and behold, a car came toward me. I started to question if the crossing was really closed. To make matters worse I had to wait on it before backing into the drive. Bummer. As I sort-of-patiently awaited the car to pass, I looked again at the railroad crossing. Indeed it was closed and there was no way to get past the mound of dirt in front of the crossing.

Well, now. Doesn't that driver feel a bit embarrassed. I felt smug in my summation.

As I was pulling out of the drive after a nice visit with my dad, I notice another car and then another not heeding the warning sign. Because of their failure to obey the sign without question, time and gasoline was wasted.

Road Closed To Thru Traffic. It should be ones first clue.

Driving past the road closed sign again, I began to wonder how many God-signs I ignore in this thing called life. It interferes with my plans, my ways and, sadly, my selfishness.

Road Closed to Thru Traffic.

God's plans. God's ways. His plans and ways are so much better than mine. I can't even comprehend His awesomeness. He wants the best for His people.

Last spring I witnessed woman struggling to get all of her groceries in the van while keeping track of her small children in the rain. I felt that nudge (sign) to help her but at the same time the voice in my head said the woman would think I'm strange or perhaps trying to 'steal' her kids. I sadly listened to the voice in my head.

I kept walking. Walking into the store like I had never saw that sign. I can only imagine how it might have blessed her. I know it would have blessed me when our children were younger. Yet, I kept walking.

A missed opportunity because I didn't heed the sign.

Road Closed to Thru Traffic.

Note to self: pay attention to the signs.





Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Get-Away

The weekend flew too quickly. Time just doesn't stand still especially when you're with your family trying to savor each moment.

We made a few classic rookie errors like thinking we'd just get off an exit to grab a quick bite. Our first hint was the sign that read it was six miles to a particular restaurant. A bit of construction on the six mile trek didn't help our time schedule. Then later that night, we traveled back roads to avoid rush hour traffic. When you really don't know the lay of the land, google maps doesn't know squat when calculating the amount of time it will take to get from point A to point B. Live and learn. 

One of our highlights was watching our children participate in a tree top obstacle course type adventure. What fun it was to watch as they gained confidence with each course and zip line. To see their smiles during each course was so amazing.

Sunday came much too quickly as it always seems to do each weekend. Before we left the hotel we attended a church service via live internet feed from Elevation Church. While I wouldn't want to attend church that way each Sunday since I tend to get distracted and go do something else, it was a great way to end our weekend together.

The Elevation Church lead pastor talked about the overused phrase 'God is in control' and other phrases like it in his sermon, The Second Circle. Nowhere in the Bible is that phrase used. Sure, there are scriptures that come close to that phrase but nothing with the exact wording. 

'God is in control' works well when things are going well.

You landed a new job...God is in control. 
You passed the test you thought you'd fail...God is in control.
Your medical test came back perfect...God is in control.

You lost your job, your house was broken in to, or your child has cancer. A person approaches you and says, 'God is in control' or 'God's got you'. Now what do you think? I know I'd start to question a few things. It was a great reminder of how I need to really watch my words.

If you have an hour, I encourage you to watch the sermon. Here is a blurb of the sermon:
"God is in control." It sounds nice and it makes a great bumper sticker - but do we really believe it? How can God, and all His infinite power, love, and grace, coexist in a world with cancer, divorce, human trafficking, and genocide? How can God possibly be in control when life often feels very much the contrary? In part 3 of our series I Don't Know What I Believe, Pastor Steven explains how God and His sovereignty give us a hope to cling to during the most tumultuous seasons of our lives.

God is always there. His plan is always His plan even when we human try to messing it up. God is always there and surrounding when hardships come. He is circling us.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Congratulations, Book Winner!

We have a winner! Sandy (aka: Anonymous  thewiggys8...)  Congratulations and I just know you will love Rebellious Heart just as much as I did.

Thanks, everyone, for playing along! I know you're sad your comment number wasn't picked by random.org. But, don't cry. Because Rebellious Heart in paperback form is available from amazon.com right this very minute! Or if you can't wait, I've heard it is also in various bookstores (brick and mortar) already. Or if you have a Nook or Kindle, tomorrow (Sept 15) is the day to download immediately. 

If you haven't read the rest of Jody's book, I encourage you to do so. I love all of her novels. They each have their own personality. Click on over to pinterest to find boards about each book. It's fun to see Jody's view of each book.

It's getting that time of year where a great book, comfy chair, and a cup of tea/coffee make book-loving people like us all giddy! Enjoy!


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Rebellious Heart [Book] Giveaway

We have a winner. Sandy (aka: thewiggys8...) please check your email and respond to it within 24 hrs from the end of the contest. Congratulations and I just know you will love Rebellious Heart just as much as I did. 

My Dearest Friend,

Today is a most auspicious day. I, for one, am excited. For, today my friend, you will have a chance to win a marvelously written historical novel by author extraordinaire, Jody Hedlund.

Rebellious Heart's Susanna Smith is a young woman from a family of social standing. A saucy spitfire, this one. Eavesdropping is her specialty when it comes to desiring an education like her brother. Her compassion for others is evident in helping those less fortunate than her status in life. And, her love of books-like none other.

Ben Ross is a highly educated, poor country lawyer who is out to prove he isn't a lower class citizen. His fight for human freedom is of great importance. Ben knows Susanna from an unfortunate childhood encounter which left Susanna embarrassed and Ben harboring a feeling of resentment.

Years later the two are brought together by an unlikely situation. Danger and confusion over right, wrong and that ever-changing, pesky grey area becomes their life. One questions fear over man's authority verses doing right according to God. One breaks man's laws because it's not in accordance with God's.

Rebellious Heart, set in 1763 Massachusetts, is inspired by our second President and First Lady, John and Abigail Adams love story. Our dear author, Jody Hedlund, took liberty with her imagination to make this book a fine piece of fiction, indeed.

Ben Ross is swoon-worthy, kind and passionate in his beliefs. Susanna Smith is priceless in her fight between what is proper for her status and what her rebellious heart is screaming. You'll fight with yourself as the pages turn. You'll not want the story to end but cannot help yourself as the pages turn quickly with your need to know what happens next.

I, personally, devoured the last page three days ago. I have yet to start another book, which is uncharacteristic, because the lessons to learn from Rebellious Heart have kept my soul deeply searching.

In the joy of reading each and every page, may you ponder; if faced with similar situations could I really make a difference and face fear with courage or let someone else be the difference while I stayed comfortable.

Hurry, my dearest friend, hurry. For you only have a short period of time to enter the great giveaway.

May favor be upon you as you enter in the comment section.



Enter to win a signed copy of Rebellious Heart even before the book is released!!

To Enter:
  • Leave a comment with your email address so I can notify you when you win. If you win, you'll then have 24 hours to email me your address or I'll pick another winner.
  • You must be a residence of the lower 48 states (USA).
  • And share. Share like your mamma and daddy taught you. Tweet, share link on facebook, email all your friends who can read, text someone you know would love this book. Shout it from the rooftops about the chance win this book. But, tell everyone to hurry and enter because....
Giveaway ends Friday, September 13th at 8 PM ET. At which time I will use True Random Number Generator at random.org....just to be fair and stuff.






Where readers can find Jody Hedlund:
Facebook: Author Jody Hedlund
Twitter: @JodyHedlund
Website: jodyhedlund.com







Friday, September 6, 2013

All Things New

Wars and rumors of war. One cannot turn on the radio or television without hearing some sort of disaster, talk of war, murder, shootings, children missing and the list could go on and on.

One can get discouraged, frightened, and even depressed. What do we do when we feel like no matter how hard we pray nothing is happening. No matter how much we talk about situations, no one hears.

Then we remember. God is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. He sees all, hears all. I believe He cries and shakes His head in disgust when we mere humans think we are god.

The grave has lost and He makes all things new. Peace and hope are within reach and settle over us. His love is never-ending.

His Word says:
 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
 5 And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. (Revelation 21:3-6 ESV)

Take some time to listen to this video and remember He makes all things new. Worship with Him as you sink into the music.


Monday, September 2, 2013

I Spy Lessons

I spy something green. 

Is it your shirt?

No. 

Is it.....

Remember when you were a kid and your mom/dad had a brilliant idea of playing I Spy? Sometimes I think it was just a ploy to keep us occupied when life got a little crazy. Read: when we drove our mom nuts arguing/screaming and running in the house.

When is the last time you really looked around & listened? I mean really looked. And really listen. When is the last time you sat on a porch swing and observed what is going on all around?

I used to play a game with our kids when getting them unwound at bedtime. We would all be quiet and listen. We'd then name off all the sounds. There were so many sounds we never heard during the busyness of day. The ticking of the clock. A plane in the distance. The noise the furnace made while blowing throughout the house.

At this very moment I am sitting on our "porch" swing which is outside connected to the swing set. What do I see and hear?

  • Shadows dancing on the house siding.
  • Swing creaking as I rock back and forth...
  • Pine needles falling on the keyboard as I type. 
  • I hear a lawnmower in the distance.
  • Vehicles rushing down the road.
  • Wind rushing through the trees
  • Beautiful white, fluffy clouds. The kind of clouds we used to lay on the ground watching what shape they'll form next.
  • The bluest of skies.
  • Our dog freaking out because of the horsefly 'messin' with him.
  • Corn bending and waving in the wind.
  • Corn stalks turning a shade of yellow as fall threatens to come closer.
  • Horses nickering.
  • Kittens thinking their humans and sleeping on an outdoor chair. 
  • A vulture in the sky circling gracefully. 
  • Cicadas singing their song.
  • Crickets competing with the song of the cicada.
  • A spider busily rebuilding its web.
  • A sound from the neighbor which made the dog jump (and me too!).
When I take the time to sit down and really look and listen, I am amazed at all the beauty and wonder God has made just for us. 

Now, there are some things I really wonder what God was thinking when He made them and said they were good....like skunk (smell), mosquitoes, ants, swoopy birds....but I'll ask Him about those when I see Him face to face one day. ;)

Update: a few posts ago I told you about a giveaway coming up. September 11 is the day to mark on your calendar, phone or whatever electronic gadget I can't keep up with! Giveaway entry is only open for a limited time...as in it will be over the next day. So, make sure you tell all of your friends who enjoy Christian Fiction to head over this way on the 11th. Giveaway is the newest book of Jody Hedlund - Rebellious Heart.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Tissues at Stand-by

The video shows a loving tribute to this 96 year old man's wife, Lorraine, of 75 years. Sweet Lorraine passed away this past spring. Below the video is the story as told in the "about" section of the video on youtube.

Enjoy and have the tissues handy.


"The story of how it all begins:
A 96-year-old Illinois man wrote a song about his wife of 75 years and when he sent the heart-wrenching ode into a singer-songwriter contest, they decided to produce it for him. When Fred Stobaugh talks about his wife Lorraine now, it's hard for him to hold back tears after the life they led together he says was 'like a dream.' After she died, he was sitting alone in the Peoria home they once shared and for the first time in his life he decided to write a song. It just fit her,' Stobaugh said.

After penning 'Oh Sweet Lorraine,' he saw an ad in the local paper for a singer-songwriter contest. Though he was neither of those things, he decided to send in the ballad. 'I'll just send a letter,' he remembered thinking, though the contest rules asked for a video of the songwriter entrants actually performing their song. 'Send it all in. Never thinking I'd get an answer or nothing.'

But when the contest runner received just one giant manila envelope in a sea of emailed entries, they took notice. They never expected anything quite like what Fred sent them. 'In fact,' said Jacob Colgan of Green Shoe Studio, who ran the contest, 'on the actual envelope itself, it says "I don't sing, I would scare people, haha!"' Nonetheless, the emotion behind the lyrics was enough convince the studio they wanted the song.

When Stobaugh talks about his late wife, he gets a faraway look in his eyes. 'She was the prettiest girl ya ever saw,' he said. 'She gave me 75 years of her.' Jacob decided his company would have 'Sweet Lorraine professionally recorded. When Colgan contacted Stobaugh to tell him the good news, the bereaved husband welled up with tears. 'Why would you want to do that,' he wondered. But to Colgan and his crew at Green Shoe, the answer was obvious. Your song touched us,' Colgan told Stobaugh.

They set to work, collaborating with Stobaugh to craft a that would do Lorraine justice. When the song was finished, though, Colgan had reservations about letting Stobaugh have a listen. 'Because it meant so much to him it meant so much to me,' Colgan said. 'I was actually nervous.' He need not have been. Stobaugh could barely hold back his emotion as the songs final refrain, 'the memories will always linger on,' finished playing. 'It's wonderful,' he said. 'Just wonderful.' Stobaugh's touching dedication to his wife of over seven decades is available on iTunes."

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Turned Upside-Down

My first thought as I looked at the picture message on my cell phone last night, after getting over the need to squeeze his pudgy cheeks (he is 8# 6 oz), Babies sure have a way of turning lives upside-down!

Even before the moment of the positive pregnancy tests, our thoughts are usually consumed with thoughts of babies. Names, boy or girl, twins or more, formula or breast, should we find out the sex or wait, cloth or disposable diapers, nursery decor, do we need a larger vehicle, which baby items are proven safe. The list could go on  and on. 

Then, the moment arrives when the test actually is positive. If you are like I was it was a mixture of emotions. So happy yet a moment or two of holy cow this is really happening. More planning, more questions, more wonder at your growing belly. Concern when you start to realize not every baby is born healthy. When is the last time I felt the baby move?

Enter birthing classes. Enter realizing this baby really does need to come out and not sure you're ready for that! 

Immediate family members are also effected and happy a little baby to love and hold enters their thoughts. Well-meaning talks of what to expect or what no one told them begin to take over. 

Due date comes and go and you wonder if this child is ever going to come out. Are those Braxton Hicks or the real-get-me-to-the-hospital contractions. 

Babies can turn a world upside-down even before they enter the world.

And, once they enter this world. Watch out. That little one will capture your heart in ways you didn't think possible. That smile. The stolen moments watching the little one sleep. Cuddling. 

Then I thought of Jesus. The people waited for a Messiah to come and save them. They had hopes and dreams of an adult. Yet, God's wondrous plan was a baby to save the world. Remember how Mary and Joseph's life, and life of their parents was turned upside-down? From infancy to adulthood, Jesus turned the lives of many upside-down. Once He entered this world things were never the same again.

The thing with babies, everyone loves to love on babies. Hold them, rock them, give them grace for crying. We grow up with our babies. We, adults, think we are all grown up and know many things. 

When, in reality, we grow in faith when our baby screams all night and we don't know how to comfort them anymore after trying what seems like every possible problem. We cry out and lean on God in those moments of sheer exhaustion. 

God sure knows what He is doing, huh?! I am ever so thankful.


Saturday, August 17, 2013

No-Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

I would love to take credit for coming up with this ingenious concoction, but I can't. These are like the good ol' No-Bake Cookies made with cocoa, but not. 

I found a lovely picture of cookies drizzled with chocolate along with the recipe on facebook. I immediately went to pinterest to find the original recipe. No.such.luck. Then I searched the internet. Could not find a recipe like it anywhere. So...thanks to whomever came up with this awesome deliciousness! 

When I saw this recipe I thought, guess we are starting domestic science with the son today.
(Domestic Science is just a manlier name for home ec. His wife will love me.)

Pardon the well-used sheet cake pan.
And the allergy oil on the counter top...and the newspaper...
They turned out great! Better than the regular No-Bake Cookies. And, of course, I needed to teach him how a recipe is just a guide (unless it is bread or something like that), right?! We made a modification with the chocolate topping.

So, without further adieu, here is the recipe:

No-Bake Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies.

2 c sugar (delicious already, huh?!)
dash of salt
1 stick butter (1/2 c)
1/2 c milk
1 c peanut butter
1 t vanilla
3 c oatmeal (quick)
Waxed or parchment paper

In a large saucepan, bring to boil the sugar, salt, butter and milk; stir constantly. Boil mixture over medium heat for 1 full minute. Remove from head immediately.

Add peanut butter and vanilla; still well. Add oatmeal and stir until thoroughly incorporated. On a sheet of waxed or parchment paper, drop mixture by the teaspoonfuls (or used a medium-sized cookie scoop).

Drizzle with a mixture of cocoa, powdered sugar and water* if desired. Cool until set and firm.

*Our modification was the drizzle. We just melted a good quantity of milk chocolate chips. This was also my opportunity to teach him to eyeball the quantity! ;) The melted chocolate will firm up after a few hours but not get really hard. For this reason, store in a single layer in an air-tight container.

Enjoy!

Are you a follow the recipe to a "T" person or a 'recipe is a guide' type of person?

Friday, August 9, 2013

Room For One More

Have you heard about National Back to Church Sunday? It is Sunday, September 15. That Sunday or any other Sunday would be a great time to visit a church if you don't already have a church home. And, while looking, don't judge all churches by one bad experience. Give another church a try until you find somewhere you feel at home.

We are all sinners. We are all hypocrites. We are all struggling. We don't have it right. We aren't perfect. We are still learning what it means to live like Christ. And, we're still learning what it means to fully lean and rely on God. We still like to take matters into our own hands and make a mess of things. We still try to over-think and over-explain the Gospel message. We need one another. We need this community we call church. We need to fall down and reach out to God even when this thing pride gets in our way. And we need to recharge through worship after a long week in the world.

All of that to say, you'll fit in just fine. There is always room for one more in the pew. And, if someone tells you there isn't...just wiggle your rear into that space anyway.

This video caught my eye and I found myself checking out their website (link above). There are quite a few comical videos so click the link above and enjoy.



Okay, you twisted my arm. Here is another one...an awkward invitation. Just don't do it this way...seriously.


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

That & This

[I already had a blog post titled This & That so I thought I'd mix it up....yup, that's me...a big mixer-upper]

What have you been up to? Seriously, I'd love to know. 

Me? How kind of you to ask. Well, life is life and I'm sure you can relate. Can we just talk about this summer for a moment? Or should we say all together now, "What summer?"  Or maybe it's just me.

Found picture here.
Check out her site; it looks great!
Son went with his youth group to a church youth conference. In Arizona. In the middle of summer. During the massive heat. One question: who, on this planning committee, thought it was a good idea to have a conference in Arizona. In the summer. Seriously. Well, all survived so I guess that was part of the committee's end goal. Win-win for them.

We attended a wedding of a relative. Then an announcement we will have another little born early next year (not me but another relative....not the relative who just got married...phew, glad I cleared that up!)

And one day turns into another and poof ! summer is almost over. Back to school sales and items line stores and crush the dreams of endless fun and swimming for girls and boys. Way to go Back to School. I hope you're happy knowing you're stepping on fun and youth.

Which reminds this teaching at home momma. I still have a few books to order. And a notification and book list to turn in...before school starts. And, I may or may not be panicking. English. What in the world do you do for a boy who hates English? Just to clarify, he loves to speak English...just not learn about or put pen to paper. Sigh. So I avoid the cloud hanging over my head that is now yelling, "English! Decide something already!"

In other news: we just purchased the movie Not Today. If you don't know, it is a movie about human trafficking. It is still sitting in mint condition in its pristine wrapping. I'm a little scared to watch it. Honestly, I cried during a portion of the trailer. Okay, maybe a little bit more than cry. I may or may not have sobbed. I felt it was an important purchase. One, it is set in India and a daughter was there recently ministering to the children born from those in sex trafficking. And, two, it's a way to make your 'voice' heard in this world saying you're supporting this cause and movie...you know, money talks and all. 

May I just say I'm a little giddy. A new book is being released by one of my favorite authors, Jody Hedlund. Eeeek. Book nerd, I am. And, you may want to tell ALL of your book-loving friends to stay tuned to the silly, old blog as there will be a book giveaway during the first part of September. Yup, mark your calendar folks, it is going to be a good one!

What have you been up to this summer? Leave a comment telling us one (or more) fun thing you've done this summer. Or leave a comment and say, "I hear ya!" if your summer has gone poof !

Friday, August 2, 2013

Clearly I'm Wrong

I looked at the caller ID before answering the phone. A cell phone call from a number I didn't recognize. Thinking it might be someone I know but not know their cell number, I took the chance and answered.

Me: Hello.

Caller: Peggy?

Me: I'm sorry, you have the wrong number.

Caller now turned Grumpy Gills: (Angry sigh) Why do you have a Townnearby number if you live on Nameofstreet?! Your number is wrong!

Me getting a bit or maybe a lot defensive: Because I live on Townnearby side of the road. The other side is Othertown side of the road. (where we live, our road is the boundary road for the two towns and depending on which side of the road you live is what determines the mail service and emergency response dept)

Grumpy Gills: Well, I've been trying to get a hold of Peggy and I can't find her number. Do you know Peggy and the other [it was the same first and last name of my husband...there are three in our area]?

Me in a bit of a snotty voice: Um, no. And even if I did I wouldn't tell you, Grumpy Gills!

Grumpy Gills: Sorry to bother you....click.

As I relayed this conversation to one of our children I couldn't help feeling like it was my fault I lived where I live and have a different phone exchange than what the person thought I should have. I didn't make up the rules. I've had this phone number for twenty-five years. How dare this caller make me feel guilty!

I admit my snotty reaction was wrong. I was taken off-guard; made to feel like I had done something wrong. The more thought about it, the angrier I became.

Then the old light bulb lit up. It's not me. The caller was clearly frustrated in not being able to find the person she was calling. Yet, I had to chuckle thinking perhaps the person she was calling had gotten rid of their land line and didn't have a phone number in the phone book. And this person was calling on their cell phone. (Irony isn't it?!)

I have no idea of what was going on with this caller. No idea if this caller treats others like that. It was the callers tone and accusations. Perhaps the person was having a terrible day and this was just icing on the cake.


But, I can CHOOSE to not take it so personal...which I have a terrible habit of doing. I can choose to try to understand the person may not be happy or have so many things going on in he/she's life.

Isn't it funny how God can turn something so simple as a phone call into an object lesson? Yeah, God is funny that way...and I wouldn't want it any other way.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

In Which the Old is New

"We used to wear clothes like that in the late 80s/early 90s." I found myself saying out loud to a daughter after her shopping trip. Yes. Out.loud. It slipped out before I could catch myself.

It seems, in the fashion world, styles are refreshed on an old foundation. I found myself thinking like an old, frugal hoarder. If I would have kept that pair of jeans or shirt I wore way back then, we'd save money since it is 'back in style'. Only it isn't back in style. It was changed slightly to make it new and 'hip'.

Over the last few months I've noticed much chatter on blogs and social media over certain topics.Old, tired topics made new by differing points of view. Most of this chatter revolves around topics of modesty and whether God has "the one" waiting for you.

May I just be perfectly honest with you? This type of thing drives me nuts! Years ago the movement was pro-modesty (although not everyone could agree on what modesty really meant) and pro-waiting for 'the one' with advise on praying for your future husband and writing letters to him. Now, present day, we have an upheaval.

Today, bloggers and social media messages are spouting the opposite. It feels, at times, as though we are going through a rebellious stage. I feel like I've gone back to the old, tired debate on which is best....stay at home mom or working mom. All that debate did was divide people. And, that sad part? Mostly Christian women cause this 'great divide'.

I've heard Christians talking about these issues in a rude way. One person's way of thinking is correct and the other person's isn't. She is naive. She is young. She hasn't been 'out in the real world yet'. She'll learn. She's ignorant of the scriptures. Nothing in the scripture points to how we should date. And, the list could go on.

What have we, Christian women, come to? What happened to lifting one another up? What ever happened to the Titus woman where the older woman walks along side the younger.

I do not know what someone else has prayed about. I do not know if or what God has told her/him about any number of things. That, my friends, is between her and God. Our relationship with God is personal. It's our own. If you feel God is telling you to pray for your future husband, go for it. If you feel God is leading you to pray a different way, be obedient.

Our lives, given by God, form our many thoughts and opinions. Our goal is to try to line them up with scripture. My conclusion from my life story thus far? God cares deeply about our lives and where we are going no matter what the subject or trial.

He gave us free will. Just like us, as parents, watching our teens and young adults make decisions. Sometimes we wonder if the decision made was the best. Sometimes there are many choices and whatever the decision the outcome will be fine. Our job is to discern and ask God for direction. Sometimes He is silent. And, that is okay.

There are many, many, many current topics not specifically addressed in the Bible. Could you imagine the length of the Bible if every scenario was listed? Wowzers! When I read the Bible, I am struck how much I (we) am loved. How everyday occurrences (including relationships) are included.

Let's treat one another with love. Have the hope of a child with dreams. Faith that God wants us to ask Him for His guidance in ALL matters of our lives. Let's not compartmentalize our lives over here and God over there and merge them when it is convenient for us.

Let's go out and be kind to one another. I often fail. But God is there to forgive and I hope the person in which I was unkind gives me grace. Lots and lots of grace!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Double Yellow Line

Hey. You know that solid double yellow line down the middle of the road. Yeah, that line. That means NO passing. Trust me, there was a solid yellow line at the CORNER where you passed me as I was slowing down with my blinker on to turn. Yup, awesome. This message brought to you by The Refresher Course in Driving Today.
Not my finest moment in facebook status history. I usually try to be upbeat and funny IF I feel the need to post. But man, others driving with little regard for others just makes my mama bear claws come out. 

Shortly after I posted the above status update, I turned on the television and up pops the Katie Couric Show. Guess the topic. Forgiveness.

I didn't see the entire show. Only one segment where singer, songwriter Matthew West was talking about his song, Forgiveness. His song was inspired by a letter he received. The writer of the letter was also a guest on the Katie Couric Show along with the person she forgave. The person she forgave was the killer of her daughter. He was 23 years old, at the time, when he chose to drive drunk. He drove drunk and killer her 20 year old daughter (along with the daughter's friend). 

Here is the link if you'd like to watch a serious of videos from this show.

There was something Matthew West said that hit me right in the heart. He has two young daughters and he didn't know if he could forgive like this mother did. He has "trouble forgiving the driver who just cut me off...." Arrow.to.the.heart. 

What does forgiveness look like? I used to think it was the really big stuff. Like losing your child to some senseless crime or accident. As I grew older, I realized it is the every day 'stuff'. But, sometimes it is easy to lose sight of that when you're deep in the middle of a wrong. 

How many times do we forgive? Seventy times seven as the Good Book tells us.