Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A little ice...

Well, I am headed off to Kansas City, Mo in about an hour. I just saw the weather channel reporting that they are under an ice storm warning.

Pray for us as we travel. (Jennifer, Cindy & I are headed there along with another mom from Eli's school for a conference on Asperger's Syndrome.) I am excited about how God will grow me this weekend!

Thank you!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

I can handle it mom.....

Theresa took some AWWWESOME pictures of our fam this week. I can't post them all, but thought this these fun ones would be so appropriate with the conversation that follows.

And T- you are AWESOME! I know you prefer still life photography, and we were anything but still, but I figured if you can make rocks look so good...:-)
And you amazed us! What a blessing! Thank you!

We had company for Thanksgiving, and it was wonderful. The kids gave up their rooms (as all kids should have good memories of doing for family!). When Julia got her room back last night, she decided she didn't want the safety gate back on her bed. I was a little nervous... but so goes all strivings for independence. So after an accident free night, we had this little conversation today:

Me: "Wow Jules! I'm proud of you - you didn't fall off the bed last night"

Julia (with an air of confidence): "Yep. I just watched where I was going and stayed up really late!"

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Well, not over spilled milk, at least.....

Well - this one's especially for you Marcy. :-)

This morning, shortly after I left for work, Jason had this sweet little conversation with Julia. It will be especially appreciated by my friends who have prayed and shared my burden to grow in areas of sensitivity and sharing my emotions more freely. :-)

Jason: (Pointing to a picture of me on the refrigerator:)
"Julia, I have the most beautiful, sweet wife in the whole world."

Julia: "I know. But she's not here now. "

Jason: "No, but you remind me a lot of her."

Julia: "That's because we look alike." .....

Jason: "Yep, you sure do."

Julia: "But we don't cry the same."

Jason: "What do you mean?"

Julia: "Well, I cry a lot, and Momma doesn't cry at all."


Well, I do, occasionally, though not as often as I'd like. Thanks to God, faithful prayers, (and Marcy!) I'm getting there though! :-)

Friday, November 17, 2006

Back to serious.... (sorry!)

But just as you excel in everything-in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us-see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
And here is my advice about what is best for you in this matter: Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.
2 Corinthians 8:7-12

I have this posted by my kitchen sink. However, over the months it has faded into decoration, and it caught my eye, and heart, differently today than it has in the past.

Others are better at giving than me. The "compare your earnestness with others" part really caught me, because I've got some great people to challenge me. And what's the basis of all that earnestness ? That profound realization and understanding that Christ, who had everything, gave it up in order to see me experience what He had.
Who does that these days? Do we even comprehend that?

If I've enjoyed that, ( which is an understatement.....) then I am called to ask myself this question:

How badly do I want others to experience that dumbfounded unworthiness and deep joy too?
Am I willing to give up what I have so someone else can have it?
The context is in giving... but can be applied in so many ways, as Paul was so good at.

I have knowledge... do I give it up in order for someone to be smarter?
I have material needs met... would I give it up to enjoy watching someone else not struggle for a time?
I have freedom... would I put it aside to allow someone who's never tasted freedom before to experience it?

I don't know that I've grown up and out of me enough yet. There's a me that still wants to see me happy before others, most of the time. Oh, not consciously... but honestly the day to day living reveals much more about the heart that the conscious thought.

BUT..... I'm getting there, more and more, with glimpses, through His Spirit; finding out what its like to be so enraptured with Him that the joy of seeing others delight in Him truly outweighs the satisfaction of any self indulgences I would provide myself.

Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it....

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Julia said today that she is allergic to the cold.

I think there might be a few of us who are!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Fiction finally won me over!

A long wait at Ceasar's Pizza last night afforded an opportunity for me to get deep into my second book by Randy Singer. (The Cross Examination of Oliver Finney.)

I don't usually spend a lot of time reading fiction... but Singer has me hooked. (Thanks Stu!)

I've been through some heady apologetics courses... all of value, and I love that kind of study. But, honestly, it can sometimes be hard to translate that info to where the average person lives and talks every day...yet these two books do exactly that - and amazingly!

The Cross Examination of Jesus Christ puts the history of this man we claim as Savior on trial in a courtroom to see if "beyond a doubt" can really hold water.... and the Cross Examination of Oliver Finney puts the Christian faith on trial, in the form of an everyday man, not only up against other religions of our current culture, but against some of the doubts we ourselves grapple with in our journey . And he does all of this in the form of a mystery that has kept me as interested as the chunks of realistic 'aha' moments I walked away with in wondering how we gracefully deal with our convictions and doubts.

And if those layers aren't enough.... you can join in the mystery yourself... look for the code in "The Cross Examination of Christ"... get your pen and pencil and start deciphering the mystery. (I didn't find it until I read the second book.) At one point, when the books were released, there was a part yet to be solved...with reward involved ....I haven't heard if it has been yet or not...(Stuart - any news on that?)

Either way, this has been funnest and most valuable fiction I've read in a while - if you've read it, let me know what you thought. (But don't tell me the end...I'm not all the way through! ) If you haven't read it, and were wondering what to dive into next....

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Reason # 11 - Why it's bad for elementary teachers to have TOO MUCH time on their day off

Cindy - (still my friend, I think.....:-) didn't want Jason to feel left out.

I did have someone tell me that I reminded them of Angelina Jolie once. At the time I wondered what they were on, but in this picture of us, I can see how they would be mistaken.

Reason #10 - Why elementary teachers are brilliant in their work with photoshop....

Cindy cleaned up my profile pic... hope that makes you all happier.

Of course, it took her a while to edit James Bond out of the original one for me...but, you know, that's what good friends do for you on their day off....

And I ask myself WHY I ever encouraged Rush men to blog....

Would this one be acceptable?

Thank you. Since my husband commented on the same thing... he will be pleased to see your posts. I'm not practiced at cropping,.... you know, with a family to take care of and all.....

While I don't mind posting pics of my kids on my own site.... I don't want their precious faces up on every site I comment on. That weirds me out a bit. And since I am the one who usually runs the camera, I don't have a great selection of personal pictures of just me, apparently unlike you all......

And, now that the criticism has "sprinkled" me enough, (Tim, Dusty and Terry), I'm trying to change it....and can't figure out how I did it the first time. That should also bring you great pleasure. :-)

Friday, November 10, 2006

Reason # 9- why elementary teachers need to focus on their curriculum more than Photoshop.

My friend Cindy, thought I needed an updated picture for my blog. So she did this for me.

I'd laughed so hard, the self degradation was worth the posting.

However, all those nice things I've said in the past about her being such a great teacher for my son.... blah blah blah.
'Sometimes God uses the desert as a refresh button for our hunger and thirst for Him.'

It was dark in the concert I was at last night when the artist on stage spoke those words. I fumbled through my purse to find something to write it down on.

I don't appreciate the desert when I first walk into it. I often look around bewildered, wondering how I got here. Then panic sets in. How do I get out? Seems that by the time I realize I've walked into the desert, I'm so far in that civilization looks out of reach.

What I don't like about the desert is that it's often my own misdirection that ended me up there in the first place. What I love about the desert is that it replaces my absurd and misplaced sense of self reliance with desperation for Him.

A little while later in the concert, we got a call revealing heartbreak and loss in the life of one we love here at Memorial. Today at work, calls came in from other directions as well revealing more significant struggles in the lives of other loved ones.
Life was under the magnifying glass. What would have stressed me out a few days ago seems silly. What I didn't have time for then, I desire to shift to now. Much of what I did invest myself in now seems to lack it's former significance. It's funny how true pain becomes the litmus test for petty agitation and stress.

It's not that I think we have to live in the midst of tragedy all the time to have a right perspective on life. I laughed today - and hard. I discussed light poles, carpet cleaning, and placed orders for copy paper. All of those were as much a rightful part of the day as the conversations I had about funerals, and cancer, and pain.
It's just that I am desperate to put those things in their proper place more today than I am other days. To have the conversations with the PSO guys, and appreciate them as a individual representations of my God's knitting than just a meeting to check off my appointment list. To take the stressed out phone calls, "backseat" my own abilities, insecurities or reasoning, and rest in God's presence having priority & purpose to drive the situation.
To boot insecurity and fear out the door because they leave me with a pile full of nothing for all the energy they extract from me.

Our God sustains us. He upholds, and frees and comforts and rewards us. He is worthy of praise... always.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

ONCE is enough, already!

Every Tuesday we have a staff meeting at church. I take notes. Following the meeting, I re-write the notes and email it out to the staff and elders who weren't present. It's not my favorite thing to do.

While I acknowledge the merit and purpose of the notes, I was explaining to Shane, our worship minister, why I don't like to do the notes.

"It's just that I hear it when we sit in the meeting and talk, and then I take notes, and then I come out and rewrite the notes. I don't even like to do the spell check by the end of it. It's just so repetitive and redundant. "

At which point he not -so- funnily pointed out that I had just done the very thing I hated.

That's reason #10 why I think worship ministers should stay in their office during the day. :-)

Monday, November 06, 2006

I'm studying the Patriarchs right now, ( a Beth Moore study) which I LOVE. However, it is difficult to let it all sink in when you get behind and try to do six lessons in two days. My perfectionism wants to be caught up and 'on the right day' the expense of coming away without life changing insights.

I don't know if it's a girl thing or what... but it seems like I need a lot of organization & structure in my life. It's not even that I think organization is bad, but rather that my dependency on it can be sometimes as harmful as it is helpful.

I stress out at the interruptions of life. (As if they are ever going to stop!) I act surprised and have yet to adjust to the idea that daily surprises and interruptions are as predictable as my rountine is.

*Mentally* I know I need to be flexible. However, as with many things, the chasm between the way I respond in the little world in my head and the way I really respond is still pretty big. I get frustrated so easily. Shamefully so. I like the 'me' in my mind more than the 'me' I have to live with each day.

I believe beyond all doubt that the God's Spirit has the ability to remove that chasm...I'm just acknowledging that I'm not always willing to go through what it takes to get there. I hate the me that cycles through motiviation and self denial back into laziness or moodiness. I shamefully find myself praying for God to make it come easier to me, though I know that would lead to self reliance and hence self destruction pretty quickly.

So, for now... again, I struggle to take in all Paul shaerd in Romans 7 & 8. ..."in my inner being, I delight in God's law... but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind... What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God - through Jesus Christ our Lord! ... But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit that lives in you.. ....."

I believe it. Now if I can stop holding myself back from it's transformation for all my petty fears and preferences!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Good Grief.

I do NOT wear big earrings.

I'm not even going to try and be serious till we get this out of our systems.
My son made up his own joke today:
What kind of tape does butter use?

That's pretty funny. :-)