Tuesday, March 28, 2006

WOWEEE. What a weekend.


HUGE AMEN to all that our amazing God did at workshop! There was more than one of us who I think were slightly skeptical in the recesses of our heart about what it would look like ... and I have been completely and rightly humbled by my God and what He taught me. I have been on this journey ... but moving at a snails pace for sure.
We are going to travel to the Christian Church's national conference ( their version of the Tulsa Workshop) and my excitement is just intensifying daily.
Hope! That is what this weekend tasted like.
What a thrilling experience to discard the suspicious attitudes and embrace brothers and sisters that love Jesus with all their heart, revere and memorize His word because they love it deeply, and be okay with the fact that we sometimes arrive at different conclusions but can still unite in calling Him Lord, spreading the fame of His gospel, and show love, support, affection and genuine unity with each other.
How humbling and deeply rewarding it was to listen to Bob Russell - a no name to me a few days ago...( I am ashamed of that. ) - and one whom I will listen much more to now. How inspiring to deal with real issues in a manner that seems consistent with all I can study on my own in His word... though inconsistent with some of what I grew up being been taught in the past.
Thank God for men who step out in faith based on conviction despite all the naysaying.
I pray I move more and more on conviction and not in fear of what others think and say and balance that with continued respect for those who genuinely differ in opinions. Still growing up there....

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Autograph shmatograph.

So we got an unexpected surprise... and got to go see "The Wizard of Oz" children's play on this wonderfully rainy morning.

The kids loved it, and afterwards... we were in line to meet and greet the actors/actressess, as Julia really wanted to hug Dorothy. They had both picked up coloring sheets and many of the kids were asking the cast to autograph their papers. So I leaned down and asked Eli if he wanted them to sign his sheet. His reply?
"No, it's already signed."

I looked down, and sure enough, he had printed his own name in big bold yellow crayon right at the top.

Guess that's all he needed. :-)

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Make time to smell the roses, and listen to the important lessons....

Angie - you mentioned Rick Atchley in your comment, and I just have to tell you I listened to a sermon of his just tonight that has me up late, studying, writing and profoundly impacted. It is powerful - and though I know I may take some heat for this, I want to put it out there because I feel like what he says could change the shape of the church with the issues we face right now, if we really got the message out there. If I could do a link right, ( TERESA - HELP ME!) I would, but I can't.

You can go to the Richland Hills website,
and look for sermons on the left hand - the one I listened to was from March 1st, called "Learning Division." .

IT is WORTH the WHOLE listen.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

A good quote shared...

Okay - another steal from Mike Cope who shared a quote he loved... and I in turn fell in love. But it describes perfectly some of the aspects that I love about God's word...

Barbara Brown Taylor:

For all the human handiwork it displays, the Bible remains a peculiarly holy book. I cannot think of any other text that has such authority over me, interpreting me faster than I can interpret it. It speaks to me not with the stuffy voice of some mummified sage but with the fresh, lively tones of someone who knows what happened to me an hour ago. Familiar passages accumulate meaning as I return to them again and again. They seem to grow during my absences from them; I am always finding something new in them I never found before, something designed to meet me where I am at this particular moment in time.

This is, I believe, why we call the Bible God’s “living” word. When I think about consulting a medical book thousands of years old for some insight into my health, or an equally ancient physics book for some help with my cosmology, I understand what a strange and unparalleled claim the Bible has on me. Age does not diminish its power but increases it. . . .

The word of God turned out to be plenty strong enough to withstand my curiosity. Every time I poked it, it poked me back. Every time I wrenched it around so I could see inside, it sprang back into shape the moment I was through. In short, the Bible turned out not to be a fossil under glass but a thousand different things — a mirror, a scythe, a hammock, a lantern, a pair of binoculars, a high diving board, a bridge, a goad — all of them offering themselves to me to be touched and handled and used.

I love it when someone else has good words for what my heart had been saying and feeling all along!

Saturday, March 11, 2006

It's not my party and I'll cry if I want to....

Eli was invited to a birthday party today. Julia wanted to go.

I explained that this was a boy's party, and it was just for Eli. She was not convinced.

Tearfully she replied:
"But if girls don't go to boy's parties, we won't get married?!"

Who is teaching her this stuff? Seriously!!!

Friday, March 10, 2006

Out of the mouths... countinued.

Oh the joys of a food-o-phobic. Julia's a major one right now, and this week has been filled with one battle after another over her nutrition habits. Eli's kindergarten teacher even sent us a bag of marshmallows and a card today, encouraging us to have a real "food fight" with these, and to let all the other families eat their vegetables. :-) Love that. We're up for it.

We took Julia to McDonald's for lunch. She was eating a chicken nugget happy meal, and wanted to share her ketchup, which she loves, with me. She said:

"Here's some ketchup for you momma. It's to help when you don't like the potato or the chicken inside."

Yep. Food-o-phobic.

From the mouths of babes and princessess.

Okay. I hope noone is offended by the content of the following post. However, this conversation, recorded exactly as it happened, was just too funny not to post!

It started with a conversation between Jason, Julia and I, talking about her intentions to marry Jacob.

Jason: Well, Julia, should we go ahead and buy your dress?
Julia: Nooooo Daddy. When Lily and I grow up and become princessess, then we will get married.
Jason: Oh. Well you know that nobody turns into a princess until they're 30, right?
Julia: No, Daddy, when we're 40.
Jason: Well, even better! Am I married to a princess, Julia?
Julia: No.
Jason: Your right! I'm married to a queen!
Julia: No, Momma's a princess.
Jason: But when you get married, you turn from a princess into a queen!
Julia : No, then the queen turns into the witch.

Of course, then we terrified her by our eruption of laughter.
I would hope this is simply Disney having more influence in her life rather than her actual observations, but I'm betting there are some weeks when everyone feels that way! :-)

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Loving what He loves, and less of self.

Been reading C.S. Lewis's "The Great Divorce" and John Piper's "The Pleasures of God".

I think it somewhat of a divine coincidence to be reading the two at the same time, for the thoughts spurred on by writers who never knew each other , and the timing of each for the needs I have personally are just amazing.

In Ohio, at my grandmother's death, I experienced a deep hurt, a spiritual attack of sorts, one that if I explained might seem shallow to most, yet I knew was intended to transform me to the core. I've not really been able to write about it, and don't know that I will, but still find myself going through the transformation that it initiated even today, and the readings compound the process.

I wanted to share a quote from C. S. Lewis, that was especially clenching to my heart in this joyful yet difficult process of trying to give up myself :

"Son", he said, "ye cannot in your present state understand eternity....But ye can get some likeness of it if ye say that both good and evil, when they are full grown, become retrospective. Not only this valley but all earthly past will have been Heaven to those who are saved. Not only twilight in that town, but all their life on earth, too will then be seen by the damned to have been Hell. That is what mortals misunderstand. They say of some temporal suffering, 'No future bliss can make up for it,' not knowing that Heaven, once attained, will work backwards and turn even that agony into a glory. And of some sinful pleasure they say say 'Let me but have this and I'll take the consequences': little dreaming how damnation will spread back and back into their past and contaminate the pleasure of the sin...."

I feel that this vision, uniquely stated for me today but that echos the timeless truths God has told us about Himself, is so critical to focus on as I try to 'love what He loves' more than I love my own desires.

As I look back ... I eagerly desire to see His victory at every turn rather than my own poor efforts at self satisfaction. What a vision, to be able to behold your own life through His power and working, ... to not have to sum up yourself at the end ... but rather to have it all defined by Him....