Passion



Passion is a gritty kind of love, tough and

optimistic enthusiasm that overcomes negativity and inconvenience to make it

through to the end. (10,000 Reasons Overflow)


Wednesday, January 31, 2007

THE TOP TEN PREDICTIONS FOR 2007


I got this in an email, had to share.


1. The Bible will still have the answers.

2. Prayer will still work.

3. The Holy Spirit will still move.

4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.

5. There will still be God-anointed preaching.

6. There will still be singing of praise.

7. God will still pour out blessings upon His people.

8. There will still be room at the Cross.

9. Jesus will still love you.

10. Jesus will still save the lost.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I was wondering...


I was thinking about yesterday. I was wondering why God had me pray over those kids. I mean I so enjoyed it, but I wonder, He already knew their heart, He already knows what they need. He doesn't need me to do that. hmmmm...


Another great mystery in The Plan.

Monday, January 29, 2007

sometimes you just gotta...

I was going to wait to post this, but I don't feel like waiting, so I am not going to.

We had Fuel tonight. It was great. I apparently don't do much right because the "kids" (leaders) always just say "I'll do it" and that's ok... it's not my gift, and I am ok with that.

So today, I was on my way home from work, called Adam (me) "hey, do we need snacks" - (adam)"yeah, that would be sweet if you could". So I picked up some cookies (I never buy store brand, that was funny- they cost so much for crying out loud!) had pop from the sleepover that didn't happen at my house... woo hoo... all set. The person who normally brings them, didn't, and she didn't even know that I did. How funny. God is SWEET.

BUT! before that, we were worshipping, the projector thing didn't work, no words, so that means that for one of the songs, most of us could just listen. And I am telling you (and I am so serious!!) God came up right next to me, put His hand on my shoulder and told me which kids to pray for, but not with words, but with guidance. IT WAS AMAZING!! has that ever happened to you?? DUDE, He's warm, and sweet, and vibrating, and I don't know, there isn't really a word, it was so incredibly cool. And you want to know the craziest part, usually I always feel compelled to pray for the girls, this time, it was almost all boys. Wierd, dude. Not kidding, it was great.

God - right next to me, I am so not worthy, but here I am.

God, I pray today, that You make each one of those kids feel loved. Use all of us Lord, put us in their lives when they need us. Lord, surround them with Your love. I love You God.

Lessons


Did you ever realize that a lot of the lessons in the bible are in there more than once? In my case, I think that God knows I need constant reminding and even the lessons I know need to be retaught to me over and over... hence the name of my blog.


The sermon from this Sunday has been resonating in my heart and head since yesterday. I have a lot of thoughts, but they are all just a bunch of craziness running through my brain. So right now, I am focusing on this one song that I love and figuring out what God is trying to tell me... here is "the blessing" by John Waller.


The Blessing

Let it be said of us while we walked among the living
Let it be said of us by the ones we leave behind
Let it be said of us that we lived to be a blessing for life

And let it be said of us that we gave to reach the dying
Let it be said of us by the fruit we leave behind
Let it be said of us that our legacy is blessing for life

This day, You set life,
You set death right before us
This day, every blessing and curse is a choice now
And we will choose to be a blessing for life

Let it be said of us that our hearts belong to Jesus
Let it be said of us that we spoke the words of life
Let is be said of us that our heritage is blessing for life

'Cause blessings and curses are choices
Will we build up, tear down?
The moment of truth is now
For your kingdom, for our children
For the sake of every nation
We will choose to be a blessing for life

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Uncomfortably honest

** I had to repost the whole thing... this new beta blogger thing is wierd... so now I expect some new comments so you guys don't look so looney...
We're starting a new series soon, 'uncomfortable'. Hmmm... This is nothing new for me... I'm always uncomfortable... my pants are always too tight.
Seriously, all week, I've had this feeling about some change that is going to be going on. I felt a peace about it, even said to my boss, whatever happens, I'm going to be ok, but I'm sure I will hate it when it happens. I was thinking more like new job, moving, that sort of thing.
Last night I went on my first Fuel "field trip" and overnighter and a trip to Great Lakes Crossing (I don't like malls, that but that place is SWEET). I had a headache, it was loud, and the diesel fumes or gas fumes, whatever they were - stunk!
We divided up and I was supposed to go with Mark and like 10 other kids. They left me behind. Not kidding. Didn't even realize I wasn't there. So I tagged along with Jessie, Amber, Courtney. How can you be a fifth wheel when there is only 4 of you? I don't know, but that's how I felt.
There was an issue with where the girls would sleep, Adam asked if we could use my house, of course. I made preparations... and we were all set. He also asked the Mara's who said yes (their house is awesome I must say). It was decided that we would just all go to the Mara's. Quite frankly, I wanted to go to my own house. Completely selfish, but I did. And so did Phyllis. But we went with the group and went to the Mara's.
On the bus home I was sitting there, tired, headache, stinky fumes, and it was dark, and I pretended to take a little cat nap, but really, I was crying. "Are you kidding me God, why am I here? These kids don't like me, they have enough help, Lord, I got nothing, why?" I might sound like a jerk, but I was ready to quit. And God said to me "just wait, I got a spot for you". I'm not very patient, and I didn't want to wait. ***Youth Ministry is not for the weak, and I don't give up...
We all went to the Mara's and had a good time. We got all the kids out on time (and fed some yummy pancakes - I made them) and off to church. Still wondering to myself as I saw my daughter all the way in the back of the van, not talking to anyone and she wasn't happy. And again, "what are we doing here? Really?"
We got to church, I was praying for Aaron who did the teaching today, and I said,
God let Your message be heard by those who need to hear it. And Lord, if You are talking to me, my heart is open, Lord.
I could have stayed at my old church. It was comfortable, I could serve wherever I wanted, but I knew that wasn't part of the plan. I knew I had to go to Metro and God would eventually find my place.
His message was loud and clear. I have my place in Fuel, and I have my gifts that He gave me for good use. I am a part of the body of Christ.
1 Cor 12:12 The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Favorite Breakfast foods


1. Hashed Browns (gotta loves those potatoes)

2. bagels & cream cheese

3. Eggs

4. Biscuits and gravy

5. Saurkraut & Keilbasa (Christmas morning tradition)

6. Dad's omelettes

7. Blueberry panacakes

8. Tomato & feta omelette

9. Gramma Hutko's French Toast

10. Sausage & bacon

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Quincy Jones


I've always been fascinated by Quincy Jones. I don't really know why. I do have every CD I could get my hands on that is in his name, although there is a ton of music out there that he has produced but I just don't know it.


I guess in thinking about getting what we deserve or getting what we don't deserve, I stumbled across his quote below. He's worked some amazingly talented people. Ray Charles, Sarah Vaughn, Michael Jackson (when his freakiness was not so well known), Ella, Frank, Dizzy Gillespie.

I don't know if it's his smile, so warm and inviting, I don't know if it's that I am so jealous of his musical talent. I don't know. I will tell you this, I would probably pee my pants if I ever met him. He will be 74 this year. And I haven't seen a picture of him lately, but I bet he still smiles with his eyes.

He's humble and talented, and wonderful. He said one time "I’ve been in the business 57 years and I’ve seen it over and over again. It’s all about trusting a higher power; believing in divinity. It’s about cause and manifestation. Cause being God’s job, manifestation clearly being our job. The moment success leads you to say, “I’ll take it from here, God,” God’s reply will be, “Be my guest.” And God will walk out of the room. The only way to navigate that road is to have humility and grace. Those are the two cardinal rules. You must approach creativity with humility and have grace when you’re blessed with success."
Isn't that amazing.

Deserving

I struggle a lot with getting what I (or other people deserve). Most of the time, thankfully, I don't get what I deserve. It wouldn't be pretty. But lately, I seem to be surrounded by a lot of people who think the deserve more.

It's not by our own actions that we get to have eternal life. That's an easy one. I don't deserve it but God sent Jesus to save us. By His grace, we've been saved.

But in everyday life, doing the job that is one or two or sometimes even three levels above us. We want that promotion. I struggle because sometimes I have low self esteem and I think I must have done something that someone thought I didn't "deserve" that promotion.

I live with a 'Millenial", that's the generation of today, the one after the Gen X'ers. This generation has been coddled, and given a lot of stuff, a lot of their parents don't make them earn what they need. I am on the fence of this, Phyllis has to earn somethings but just last night, she thought that I should ask Adam if her friend (boy) could attend the Fuel event on Saturday. He's in 9th grade. I won't even ask. You know why? because it's not fair. It's not fair that there are other 9th graders who would want to come, but can't because they are no longer in the Fuel age range, they can't. Phyllis (my perception here) thinks that since she hasn't seen said boy that she deserves for him to be able to come, let's just say our day ended in a slammed door (and i was the one who slammed it).

I work with people who in my mind, don't prove that they can do the next step, but they think they should get the next step without working for it. They see a job as fun, and maybe even more rewarding but really they don't see how much work it is. I wonder, when they look at me, do they think it's fun (if they do, they need new glasses), I like my job, no doubt about it, but it's a lot of work and there is a lot of pressure, and I take work home, I miss life group, but that is the way it goes, and truth be told, I wonder... do I deserve to have this wonderful job? Probably not, but I don't think grace is just about eternal life, I think, that grace is in our everyday lives. Because while accepting Jesus as your savior is a great thing, and eternal life and paradise will be awesome, I think having Him live in our everyday lives is just as important.

Do I deserve most of what I have? Probably not, and I think I am ok with that.

I think I rambled an entire post...

Acts 15:11 We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are."

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I will follow

Act 8:11 They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his magic

We were talking about moving to a different state. I’ve lived in the same state my whole life, I am a self-proclaimed home body. I hate change, and I don’t know what the deal is lately, but I can feel myself wanting a big change. Now, I will admit that as soon as it happened I would be a wreck. Maybe I’m learning that there is no bigger safety net than Jesus, maybe my faith is growing and so is my trust. I’m seeing the little things “take care of themselves”, maybe I have a great “posse”, I’m not sure.

I have peace. I still have worries (I would be lying if I told you something different), but in that, deep rooted is the fact that I can worry about something all day long, forever, and God’s got it. I know His arm is not too short, He can reach down and come and get me at anytime.

Maybe my heart is already changing, and I am open to it, maybe God is preparing me for something big and better than I already know. Maybe not. But where He leads me, I will follow.

Mark 11:9 Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, "Hosanna! " "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!"

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

My favorite American Idol

Meet kindness


Second knife down... that's kindness. Is that what they mean when they say "kill 'em with kindness"?

I had to deal with that garbage yesterday, and I did. I walked into work, knowing that I was going to have to deal with someone who just doesn't quite get it. She doesn't get that being snitty really doesn't get you far in life. Nice guys do not finish last.


And so, I had to deal with her, and she was a B word, and that's ok. You know why? Because she only hurt herself. Not doing her work correctly, handing off 90% her programs, leaving her with not much, only hurts her. If you think I won't document that she did mostly everything wrong and her attitude, you are wrong. Notes were taken, and attitude will be noted.


But here's the thing, I could have let it affect me (outside of my stomach ache). I didn't, which is a big step for me! I was so excited about Fuel, that I didn't care - ok, I cared a little, but I prayed for her. And had another leader pray for her (and it wasn't the "God - strike her down" prayer). I hope that she learns, and not the hard way. I hope that God's grace surrounds her, I hope that she gets past her attitude and her wrong way of doing things to help her be a better person.

And for myself, I hope that I can look past yesterday when she needs to learn something, and teach it to her (if I am able), my hope for myself, is that I can live and love like Jesus. And that I don't let any of my joy be stolen.

I will tell you though, I will rebuke satan everyday, because he just can't get in the way of the good work God is doing in me, and around me.

Matthew 22:36-40 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself. 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

Monday, January 22, 2007

Today


After being in the hospital most of the day with my Gram on Friday (who is doing great, this roller coaster thing just might kill ME!) I came home to check my email from work. I was lucky enough (NOT!) to get an email saying a bunch of garbage (and we will leave it at that - got a stomach ache already!) and today I have to deal with it. My stomach is achy, my nerves are at their highest string (I'm high strung) and quite frankly I don't want to deal with it.


Our Pastor asked us yesterday, what's your Goliath. I wouldn't classify this as my Goliath, this is just satan trying to stop me and steal my joy. But here's the thing, I have been up against bigger, and badder garbage than this. And I am quite sure that someday it will come again. And I think of David, against Goliath, and the verse that Pastor J said quite a few times yesterday, 1Sam 17:37 37 The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." God can deliver me from this. I am not worried about that, I just don't want to deal with it. I'm not brave like David, but I'll do it.


Whoever said that the Bible (or the Old Testament) can't be related to our lives really needs to read it.
And yeah, I know... there are worse things...

Sunday, January 21, 2007

The kind of person you want to be

Are you the kind of person you want to be? I mean, most of us need a little more work to be a lot more like Jesus. But really, are you the person that you want to be, or the question is, are you the person God wants you to be?

So here I am. Standing in church today, singing like crazy. I can tell you that every blood vessel was worshiping God today. I was singing loud, butt was wiggling, and today, I liked who I was. The difference between last week, and this week? Probably a whole lot of prayer and I must have said 100 times this week, "satan, get away from me, you jerk". You might think I am kidding but I'm not.

And the kind of person I am today, is the kind of person I want to be. You see, last week, I wasn't good enough, all you had to do was ask me. But somehow I got to see a little of what God sees when He looks at me.

When I first started going to Metro this spring/summer, I was trying to decide if I wanted to go there on a regular basis, if I was going to be Metro (Ha! that sounds funny!). Someone was doing announcements (for the record, it was NOT Pastor J), and they said "Hi, my name is ____, you probably know me, and I might know you, but I might not, and I might never know you, there's a lot of you". Coming from a small church, where just about EVERYONE knew me, it scared me, I didn't just want to be 1 in 400. I want to make a difference, I want to serve, and if someone needs something, I want them to know who I am, so they can ask me to help. It may sound completely stupid, but that's how I feel. And so time went on, I kept going to my old church, but I must tell you, my heart pulled because I knew that Metro was where I was supposed to be, and so... God's timing (and His will), like always, prevails. And in October, I am now a card carrying (we don't really have cards-but I do have a shirt that says 'I am Metro') member of Metro. And I love it, and I will tell you, they know who I am, so much so that I get asked to do a lot of things (and sooner or later - I am going to have to say no).

Ok - there was a point, you can be whoever you want to be. Do you want to be 1 of 400, hiding in the crowd, you can do that, do you want to serve like crazy, and use the gifts God gave you? You can do that too.

Do you want to be worthwhile and special? You already are, you just need to see it, through God's glasses.

Do you have an addiction that seems to be overcoming you, but you want to overcome? You can. You and God. You might think it means that you are all alone on this earth. Nope. It means you need to be open to the resources God gives you. For me, it's my friends. I know that God has put a lot of people in my life to speak on His behalf. To love on His behalf. And it's up to me to be the person He wants me to be, and use my screw ups to help so many.

And I love who I am today, faults and all.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Things I do well


Since last week I was so down on myself, I decided to pick out some of the things I do well.

1. Cook
2. Bake
3. Clean when I want to
4. Tuck someone in at night
5. Shovel Snow
6. Buy gifts for people I love
7. email
8. spell
9. my job
10. love

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Who why where how when WHAT??

After some long time praying and missing of the extra kids in my life, my car, my house, etc, I have filled out the paperwork for Fuel, our Junior High Youth Group. Excited? YES! Absolutely. Can I get a ‘woo hoo’? Metro/Fuel has you fill out a ton of paperwork in order to work with the kids. All of which is fine by me, I got nothing to hide. So they ask you a lot of stuff. Makes you think.

Who? That’s the easiest of all of the questions, it’s me, the mom

Where? Oh, they give you that answer, Fuel

When? Mondays & whenever you have time to love on some kids

Why? Because I am called. Because I am quite sure this is where I belong.

And here comes the big questions…

WHAT? What can you do to further the kingdom and help these kids? What exactly is your ministry?

What can I do? Oh, now in comparison to a lot of talented leaders, I will tell you, I come to the alter with not-alotta… No musical ability, not a big fan of games. I cook, scrapbook, and love. That’s all I got. I know that I will not be the one they call to play laser tag, they will call Steve or Mac or Dave or Brynne, or Jessie, or May or someone, anyone else. And that’s ok. This is what I am hoping, I hope they see how much I love them. Already.

What kind of kids do you think you can relate to? Uh… right now? The two I bring, Phyllis and her friend Kelsey. But here’s the thing, every kid needs love, and I am ok with not relating to every kid, that’s why God gave us all those leaders. What I want, and how I think God will use me? I can see beauty everywhere. And sometimes where others don’t see it, I see it. And what I hope is that I help the kids (probably mostly girls) see how great they are, help them to get a glimpse of the greatness God created! That’s my prayer. I want to just love them. Love them like Jesus.

It’s going to be great!

1 John 3:18 Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

No apologies needed.


I was amazed to hear the media expected an apology for whatever happened back in the day at Michigan from Chris Webber.

Can I tell you something, he doesn’t owe us an apology. Really. It doesn’t affect us, people make mistakes, and unless, and maybe even not even then, you were on the team, he doesn’t owe you squat.

Do I go around apologizing to you for things I’ve done in the past, that I was sorry for, but that don’t affect you? No. Do I think that the media are a bunch of people who never make mistakes, put in the wrong name, publish things that are just not true? I think we all make mistakes, we all screw up at one time or another. But really, it doesn’t affect me.

There are a million things that we can do, or not do, that can affect the lives of others. Right or wrong, good or bad. Most of which go unnoticed. And that’s ok. We’re not keeping score.

Do I care about basketball? Not in the least. I didn’t care about Chris Webber when he was at Michigan as a basketball star, only as a person. Do I care about Chris Webber as a basketball star now? Not really. Do I think he has the potential to touch a lot of lives, help a lot of people, kids and such? Absolutely. I pray he lives up to that potential. I care about him as a person, and if he makes a few mistakes, he’ll be covered by the grace with the same blood I was. And for that, I am greatful.

Welcome back to Detroit, Chris. No apologies needed, we’re glad you’re here. And I can’t wait to see you live up to your potential.

Matthew 7:4-5 4How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

kids

People who say youth is wasted on the young are nuts. A lot of times I wish that I had the energy of the kids because now I know what to do with it.

And here’s the thing, as elders, yes, that’s right! I am an elder at Fuel! We are supposed to help our kids get where they need to go, and teach them, and in turn, learn a lot.

I have just been… ick lately. I wondered if I was depressed, I wondered if I was crazy, but here’s the thing, I truly believe that satan is trying to get me. Paranoid? Maybe, but it’s happened before, and just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean that people aren’t trying to get you.

There are a lot of things from my past that satan can use, and one of the biggest things is that I think (thought) that I wasn’t good enough for most of my life. And now I am at a new church (new for me) and I love to serve, in a lot of different ways, and I am quite sure that satan doesn’t want that.

But back to the kids. I look at those kids, all of them, the Fuel kids, the leaders, and Adam. And I look at them, and I see how great they are, and I wonder… do they see how great they are? Do they see how beautiful they are? Do those leaders know how great they make me feel when they welcome me? Do they know how much I love them, already? I see what they are, which is just something so awesome, and I somehow see a vision of how God is going to make them greater. I see the Fuel kids, they love God so much, they are open, and honest, and raw with God, and I see how beautiful they are, and I can’t wait to see what they are becoming. And what they will be.

They are blessed beyond what they can imagine, they know God now, they have a relationship with God, now, that means that with time, and love, the relationship they have with Him, will grow greater. They might not have the greatest lives right now, maybe they are reaching out to God because they don’t feel like anyone loves them, and He does. Maybe they have a ton of love at home, and are ready to share it all. I don’t know, and the stories will come, and I will see the love of Christ in each one as I learn their stories.

I prayed today that God would work amazing ways in their hearts. I prayed that Mark’s message would touch the hearts of the children of God. And it touched mine.
I am not sure what is going to happen over the next few weeks, months, or years. But this I know, God has a plan. And I am part of it. And I pray, He continues to use me in amazing ways.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Yesterday was quite a day. I have been thinking and praying and meditating about how I have been feeling lately.

I haven't been able to sleep through the night in weeks, maybe since before Christmas. I just thought that I had too much on my mind. Even though I am so tired, I feel like the living dead. I can't seem to relax, I feel like I am always anxious. Walking on eggshells. My stomach is in a constant state of disarray.

I try to remain positive while feeling this way. Letting God speak to me, using His word to help me get through what I am feeling, but sometimes I feel like I have a hard time digesting the words.

I'm going to keep praying.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

I wrote the post below before I went to bed. I woke up this morning and to be honest, I could have crawled back into bed and skipped church all together and to be really honest, I almost did that before I hit Fort Street (1 ½ blocks from my house). And for the record, I know that when I feel that way, that God has a great message waiting there for me, and He did.

From Sibley to the church (sorry Jeremy) I cried, not just little crying, mind you, the big kind, the kind that messes up your make up in an instant. The really ugly kind.

I’m not good enough. Over and over and over and over and over.

I could tell you a million reasons why Jesus should not have saved me. I look at things I do, and I have this great vision and it comes out ugly. I made this gift basket thing, and then in the end I thought ‘Sara could have bought one way better looking than this’ or I should have bought Phyllis a cake instead of making her one, it was ugly. Or… I could go on and on. I would love to take cake decorating classes but I don’t have the patience or the talent (or the money) to do something like that. I love to bake but I just don’t do it “pretty” or I love to scrapbook, but my pages will never end up in a magazine or look at Kelly’s on her blog, oh my, that was awesome.

I never struggle with how great God is, because holy moly, He is great, indeed. But me, I wonder why He wants me, I’m no good. And then I feel guilty because then I think, well, God made me, so I should be glorious… yikes, I can screw up anything… and it’s a vicious cycle. And I wonder, what the heck does anyone ever see in me.

Do you ever feel like you try so hard, and you just fall short, so many times?

That is exactly how I feel today. And I am ugly because I can't stop crying!!

I have said this prayer, 100 times, maybe even 10,000 times. Not even knowing it was in the bible. Back in the day, when I couldn’t sleep, I would say it, and the Hail Mary’s almost like a chant to help me fall asleep. Not really paying attention to the words, but just saying them.

It’s different now. I know where to find them, in the book of Matthew but because I am not some super scripture knower, I use biblegateway.com to get me to the exact place. When I say them now, I hear the meaning of each word and how it comes together for something bigger, something much bigger than I can even fathom.

We went to see ‘Stomp the Yard’. One part of the movie, they say this, it’s part of their heritage. I heard it, and instantly smiled. I wondered how many in that place heard what I heard, that God, no matter what, has our back. No matter how we get in our own way, how we screw it up, even how we do great things, it’s all about Him, and His will.

Matthew 6:9-13
Our Father,

Who art in heaven,

Hallowed be Thy Name.

Thy Kingdom come.

Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation,but deliver us from evil.

Amen

I have attached some of my favorite songs for worship today. Some are songs I love that people put their own pictures to, some are videos that people took at concerts, and I know that they are not perfect, but I found myself getting lost in them, remembering how great God is.

One of them, the one by Nicole Nordeman, oh my, I was moved to tears by the many faces of Jesus. It’s one of my favorite songs, and sometimes, I wonder, what if my heart wasn’t open to all His glory. Then what?


Be blessed this Sunday

I will give you all my worship – Jeremy Camp



While you were sleeping – Casting Crowns



What If – Nicole Nordeman

Saturday, January 13, 2007

shutting up


The belt of Truth
The breastplate of Righteousness
The shoes of Readiness
The shield of Faith
The helmet of Salvation
The sword of the Spirit

(Eph 6:12-30)

…And the gag to keep me from saying too much

I have a big mouth, I say things I probably shouldn’t… I think I get that from my big sister…

I knew that someone was going to come try to stir trouble, so much so that I told you… I worried about it long before it happened, until God told me, “don’t borrow trouble” but I had this anxiety (I wish I could just say that it didn’t bother me). I often say things that I can’t take back or lose my temper. Then I am sorry.

So today it came about just as I knew it would. Only I held my temper, kept my cool, it was like God had one hand on my shoulder and one over my mouth. It was actually quite peaceful. I simply said “when you have it right, then I will take it, not until then” she was not too pleased with this answer. I don’t really care, but she had known the expectation for well over a month. (I am getting much better at communicating my expectations – thanks, Sara)

I am quite sure that in all the little things satan is trying to get me to slip up. He tries to pull the rug out from underneath me, he knows that I get excited in the little things that means that I also get excited (not in a good way) over the bad things. He tries to steal my joy, but he can’t have it. HA! God is always there, He Rules, forever.

Psalm 145:13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all He has made.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Today


Phil 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.


People are affected by their surroundings. I can take this to a new level. A very high one. It was a rough day, I think I walked into work with tears in my eyes. As the day went on, God’s peace surrounded me, until she walked up to me. She wants to hand over some new programs, which would advance me two additional customers, 4 programs, 8 commodities. That’s a lot. But I know she didn’t manage them right. I told her the expectations I had prior to her handing them off to me. It’s not done. And so she is setting up a meeting today for the hand off. I immediately began to get anxious. Broke down in the car over what things “might” happen because after all, I am not Miss Cleo… lol… And it hit me, one of my favorite scripture, one that I am sure God has burned into my head, don’t worry, each day has trouble of it’s own. It is not necessary for me to borrow trouble, I can deal with it tomorrow. And then I read my devotion for today. Phil 4:8. Put good thoughts in your head, and as Michelle would say, “surround yourself with the white light of Jesus Christ”. So that is what I am going to do today… and satan… hit the road, Tina already fired you.

Matthew 6:34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Enough


Apple Cake


3 c grated apple
2 c sugar
Place in bowl & let set


2 c flour
2 t baking soda
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t salt
2 eggs
1/4 c oil

Optional: 1 c raisins, 1 c nuts

Bake 350 35-40 minutes

If cut into 18 pieces: 202 calories, 6.8g fat, 2.2 protein, 33.6 carbs, .5 g fiber

Still


I am in the middle of something. Something that I asked God to inflict His will. And now I don’t like it. The issue is not that I don’t think that God knew what He was doing, but not all the people around me follow Him, so how do I know if they are living to God’s will. And how do I know if they see my potential? DO they see all that I can do or do they see me as someone who does well at what we give her, so let’s not overwhelm her. I don’t know. This I can tell you, I don’t like where I am.
At the beginning of the year (actually before then) I decided I would have two “resolutions”. You can label them whatever you want, I don’t care. One was to get my fat butt a lot less fat and another to read and study God’s word more. First one – not doing too well, all self-inflicted, I wonder why I do that, but that’s a whole ‘nother blog. Second one, I was doing well, I usually read the devotion marked for Tuesday on Monday night. I know, I’m weird, but so far, it’s been like a roadmap for the next day. I didn’t read Wednesday’s devotion until Wednesday night, I should have, yesterday I traveled the road with no direction, and it didn’t get me anywhere. So the verse, Ecc 9:10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might. I decided to read all of Ecc 9, that is something I don’t always do, but “something” was telling me that it would be a good idea. And I really started thinking about that we are where we are supposed to be, no matter what we are doing, and not matter whether the people around us follow God, we are where we are supposed to be, otherwise, He would take us and put us somewhere else.
I was on my way to work, put in Crowder and wanted to here “forever and ever” because in the words of Pastor J “it would make me feel better”. Tonya called (I so love it when she does, it’s an awesome way to start the day) and I missed my feel good song. Only to turn up the volume to hear “be quiet” which over and over just says “be quiet and listen to the voice”. That’s it. So here I am, I am going to be silent. I am going to listen to the voice. And for those who don’t think I am good enough, they are wrong, I am the daughter of the King (which makes me a princess), what do they know?
Psalm 71:20 Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Relationship vs. Religion


I was thinking about my relationship with God after reading Sara's post. She is quite thought provoking, isn't she?

I started thinking about how God has always made His presence known in my life but I didn't always acknowledge it. Blessing upon blessing. I didn't always say thank You.

I didn't always consult God before I made a major life decision. I didn't consult with Him even in the smallest of matters. And some of those small matters, or at least what I deemed as small matters, ended up being life changers.

I thought of God as someone that I should go to after the fact. Say "thank You" or say "sorry" or "PLEASE help me!" I practiced a religion, a bunch of rules. Mostly out of fear.

Now, I still follow the rules, or at least I try, but I do it not all because I am afraid of God's wrath, but because I want to please Him. Just like others in my life, I want God to be happy. I know that He doesn't need me to be happy, but you know that one picture of Jesus laughing, I want to do that to Him. I want my choices, my decisions, my love, my life, to be pleasing to Him.

Psalm 19:14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Standing in the back

Yesterday was my first day at Fuel. It was kind of an observation time. I know 2 kids... yeah, that's it. I like to observe. I was excited and REALLY nervous. I kept asking God - Are you sure?? I actually stood in the back for one of the songs and I was getting misty, thinking that these kids might not even like me, and some of the leaders are probably checking me out, but I have to say that most of the leaders, they were excited to have me (the stupid part of me thinks they were just being polite - one guessed me at 27 years old - ha! and Mac got me a chair (either he has good manners or he thinks I'm too old to get my own... lol...) And thanks to Dean for being there so I wasn't the oldest one in the room.

As I was standing back there, I said, God, You are just going to give me some peace about this, I am REALLY nervous. And as always, He did. Adam was amazing, and I could tell you something fabulous about each leader. I am not kidding, they are great, whoever says that youth is wasted on the young, never saw these kids. The boys just emulate the other male leaders, the girls hug tightly to the female leaders, if imitation is the biggest form of flattery, these kids just think the leaders are the cat's pajamas. And Adam, there isn't a word in the dictionary to describe him fully, so I will quote him, he's "sweet".

I am excited to help one the girls in her quest to get the Word of Jesus out there. She is so excited about the Lord, there are some guidelines (rules) she needs to follow in the school districts and since I am someone who embraces rules, and I can go right up to the line without crossing it, I think I can really do some good. I think that being a part of "Corporate America" and fitting in will really be a benefit. I was actually up at 3:30-4:30 or so thinking about it. I know that I am part of something so much bigger than me. And I am scared, and nervous, and as excited as I can be. I am excited to love and be loved, I am excited to teach, and excited to learn. I know I wouldn't be called unless God was going to use me in amazing ways and make a good work in me. And I feel like I am coming out of whatever funk I was in. I feel like the real me.

Phil 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me
Proverbs 22:6 Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Struggle


Here's the thing about me and struggling. When I struggle, like with all things, I go BIG. I typically have a million things (ok, maybe not quite a million) that I am holding in. I do it because it's like trying to hold down helium balloons, one goes, they all go.

I hate struggling, and while I am quite sure you love it, I will tell you, I really hate it. I know, everyone does. But here's the thing with me, it's self inflicted. I hold it in, I don't let it go, I remember things like criticism, and condemning, things that keep me moving forward and make me think I can't do it. If I would just let it go I could do so much more, for myself, and for God. My greatest moments in life are when I remember that I am "Glorious" because He makes everything Glorious (thank you DCB).

One of the best things about struggling, ok, one of the only things good about struggling, that eventually if you are smart, you let it go, You realize really how big God is and how much He loves you. There isn't anymore pulling on your heart, I give it to God, and it's gone, at least for a moment, and sometimes that comes when you talk to a friend, and realize that you can pray for each other, and we can find strength in God's love, His word, and His promises.

Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
****Below is a poem by Shel Silverstein, I told you before that "Where the Sidewalk Ends" was one of my fave books... And instantly when I started thinking about Tug of War, I thought of his poem "Hug of War"
I will not play at tug o' war
I'd rather play at hug o' war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs
Where everyone giggles
And rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses
And everyone grins
And everyone cuddles
And everyone wins.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Love


We went and saw Freedom Writers with Hilary Swank for Phyllis’s birthday. Great movie, go see it. For real, go see it. Go see it before noon at MJR and it’s only $4 per ticket.

It’s a movie about a teacher who wants to make a difference, to get the kids, to reach them, prior to their making their court appearances. It’s about a teacher who loves the kids.

Here is my theory, kids have less of a shot in life if they don’t believe that someone loves them. Think of how many problems in life can be managed if you just know someone loves you. Think how much better it is when you know that God loves you, that even if you were the only one, Jesus still would have gotten on that Cross.

Let me tell you a secret. I guess it won’t be a secret if I tell you… but what the heck, right?

I had been praying about how to serve at Metro. A couple of times I thought I would be good at something, but the “position” was already filled. And I kept coming back to the same place. Youth. You know those teenagers. I never said a word, mostly because I thought they wouldn’t want me. I am not a Mexican Jumping Bean, I am not innovative, I am old (compared to the other leaders) and so I was too scared to say anything. All I have is the love for the kids, and that I know they need to be loved. I scrapbook and cook. Whew, somehow I don’t think that those are on the top 10 list for kids. Really. But I love. And I love BIG. When I hug you, you know I love you. You know that when I say it, I mean it. But anyways, Phyllis was IMing with Mark, and he said something like I should be a leader, “there are a lot of girls who need someone to love them”. I told her to tell him to talk to Adam and that I would be interested. I dismissed it because I didn’t think they would want me. And I got an email from Adam, asking me if I would be interested. The answer “Yes”. Didn’t take long to answer because my heart already knew the answer.

I am a little scared. OK, I am really scared. You see, I am so honored to serve God, and He is so big and I am so small. What if I don’t do it good enough? I think of so many songs that DCB has done, Glorious and Wholly Yours. I can’t fail because it’s all His, and I am His. All I can say is that I am Wholly Yours. And to the throne I come. Broken and full of dirt. Thank You God for giving David Crowder the words that my heart can sing. I am wholly Yours and I am Glorious.


Wholly Yours – David Crowder

I am full of earth

You are heaven’s worth

I am stained with dirt,

prone to depravity

You are everything

that is bright and clean

The antonym for me

You are divinity

But a certain sign of grace is this

From the broken earth flowers come up

Pushing through the dirt

You are holy, holy, holy

All heaven cries

“Holy, holy God”

You are holy, holy, holy

I want to be holy like You are

You are everything that is bright and clean

And You’re covering me with Your majesty

And the truest sign of grace was this

From wounded hands redemption fell down

Liberating man

You are holy, holy, holy

All heaven cries “Holy, holy God”

You are holy, holy, holyI want to be holy like You are

But the harder I try the more clearly can I feel

The depth of our fall and the weight of it all

And so this might could be the most impossible thing

Your grandness in me making me clean

Glory, hallelujah

Glory, glory, hallelujah

So here I am, all of me

Finally everything

Wholly, wholly, whollyI am wholly, wholly

I am wholly, wholly, whollyYours

I am full of earth and dirt and You

Friday, January 05, 2007

It's her birthday!! 14!!













She was a beautiful girl from the moment she was born, she smiled after only 5 days, and has been brightening days ever since. Where would I be without my little girl? I don’t know, and I don’t ever care to try to find that path.

If you look at the pictures of her, there are some great ones. The one with my gram is my absolute favorite of the two of them. Look at how they look at each other.

She has stolen my heart with her silly smile, and a wrinkled nose.

She went through painful days of JRA and came out on top. Never once asking why me, just making it through and snuggling on the days that she needed (that’s her first grade picture).
She’s captured the heart of my dad who would do anything for her, and you can see him light up when she kisses him.

I’ve enjoyed every trial and tribulation, every smile and giggle. I think she is the greatest thing ever. I am so blessed to have her.
Today is her 14th birthday. Time flies when you’re loving on someone that long!!







































Thursday, January 04, 2007

Tomorrow

Tomorrow is my baby's birthday. 14. I can't believe it. There's actually a lot of things I can't believe.
I can't believe what a good kid she is. I keep my eye on her, but she really is a good kid!
I can't believe her heart for Jesus. I hate to admit it, but she really loves Jesus a whole lot more than I did at her age.
I can't believe that my love grows for her everyday.
I can't believe how blessed I am.
Tomorrow I will post some pictures of her, some from when she was little. I can still remember the day I found out I was pregnant. I was a careful - even though I was doing a careless action. The nurse told me that I should go play the lottery, the odds were in my favor - I thought she was nuts.
14 years later, the prize I got that day, doesn't even compare to the lottery. You can't get this much joy from the lottery.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

I was visiting some new websites and some old ones too, looking for some healthy filling stuff because of my new quest to be healthy. I am pretty excited that I have some new bean soups... I know, my life if thrilling!!

Hopefully they will be good and I can share!! Here's an article from allrecipes.com.

Ten Essential Healthy Foods
By: Tom Shea
Find out what made our must-eat list and get new ideas for adding them to your diet.
Eat Well
The key to healthy eating is variety. Try to incorporate these foods into your diet. Eating wholesome food doesn’t mean the flavors have to be bland: these ingredients can be used to make an array of meals that are tasty and good for you.
1. Yogurt
This delicious dairy product is vitamin-rich and nutritious. According to a University of Tennessee study, yogurt may help people lose weight while maintaining muscle. Other studies have found yogurt may bolster your immune system, prevent yeast infections and stop bad breath. Substitute frozen yogurt for ice cream as your dessert of choice.
Yogurt Chicken
2. Olive Oil
Ample medical research has shown that the benefits of olive oil may go way beyond its wonderful taste. A study by Greek scientists at the University of Athens in 2004 found that this monounsaturated oil, which is rich in antioxidants, may be the key to the healthy Mediterranean diet-meaning a lower risk of heart attacks, diabetes and colon cancers.
Italian Herb Infused Olive Oil
3. Beans
Whether you toss them in a salad or add them to a burrito, beans are a low-calorie, high-fiber ingredient. Packed with antioxidants, protein and iron, beans may be the ultimate healthy food. A USDA report in 2005 said that they may even reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer. Because beans are a complex carbohydrate, they provide plenty of energy while regulating blood-sugar levels.
Three Bean Salad I
4. Nuts
When life gets busy, it’s too easy to skip meals or cut corners. Grabbing a handful of nuts is a convenient way to make sure that you get enough protein. Like olive oil, nuts are a great source of heart-healthy monounsaturated oil and antioxidant-rich, bone-strengthening magnesium. Add chopped walnuts to a salad or cashews to a stir fry.
Authentic Thai Cashew Chicken
Almond Green Beans
5. Spinach
This leafy green is one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat. Spinach is uncommonly rich in a variety of nutrients including calcium, iron, potassium, vitamins A, K, and C. A study published in 2004 by the Journal of Nutrition found that spinach combats prostate cancer, while other studies have shown spinach may protect vision and bolster cardiovascular health.
Spinach and Orzo Salad
6. Barley
In addition to being a hearty soup staple, barley is a cholesterol-lowering grain high in fiber and niacin. Barley also produces butyric acid, a fatty acid that fights colon cancer. Try mixing barley flakes into your morning cereal for a wholesome breakfast.
Beaker's Vegetable Barley Soup
7. Garlic
Used for centuries to ward off everything from vampires to evil spirits, garlic is high in vitamins C and B6, and it contains powerful anti-bacterial and anti-viral agents that help fight common colds and flu. Regular consumption of garlic is also believed to protect against cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Sauteed Garlic Asparagus
8. Fish
Studies have shown that fish is one of the world's healthiest foods. Fatty fish such as salmon is packed with protein, niacin and Omega-3, an essential fatty acid that promotes healthy cardiovascular activity. Omega-3 may also protect against a host of health concerns from obesity to sunburns. A 2005 study published by the Archives of Neurology claims that eating fish once a week may even slow the rate of cognitive decline.
Soy Ginger Salmon
9. Tomatoes
Fiber-rich tomatoes are low in calories and high in vitamin C, vitamin A, and cancer-preventing lycopene. Like olive oil, tomatoes are an important part of the touted Mediterranean diet. Several studies have found tomatoes are also beneficial in fighting various forms of cancer. Fact: although often classified as vegetables, tomatoes are, technically, fruit.
Garden Fresh Tomato Soup
10. Avocados
The nutrients in this creamy, sinfully rich-tasting vegetable read like a list of essentials for a healthy diet: cholesterol-lowering monounsaturated fat, fiber, copper, potassium and vitamins C, K, and B6. Add chopped avocado to a salad, or mash avocados to make fresh guacamole.
Avocado Feta Salsa

Weightloss Journey

Getting back to it… I really need to lose weight. I will look better, feel better, be more healthy, I know all this. But when there is a piece of Strawberry Pretzel Jello (mmmmm…) in the fridge, I sabatoge myself. And then I am like “well, I already blew it, so I might as well eat ______”.

Today is a new day, a day that gets started with some multigrain flaxseed oatmeal thingy with some bananas in it. To be honest, I would rather have biscuits and gravy or eggs and toast or just about anything else. But this will fill my tummy and it’s good for me, and on the core plan, no points. But it’s hard to choke down. I don’t like oatmeal or any other derivative of it. But I don’t like being fat more.

Sometimes I eat because I am sad, I celebrate everything with food in someway, and sometimes I eat because I am bored and there’s nothing else to do. This is something I must put at the alter for help, there is no way I can do this alone.

I will succeed in 2007 on my quest for being less. I will. I will be successful of getting it off and keeping it off!!




Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Now that's what I am talking about...

What a great birthday! Some may have thought it was boring, but to me it was perfect. It started out NYE when I had Lea, Jason, Katie, Christie, Tiny, Kiefer, Keller, and us for dinner. Made a yummy dinner for my family (who are friends) and we had yummy dessert and great company.

We played Scene It TV and I won both times. Yes, I am great. We watched the ball drop. Woke up to make waffles and sausage for everyone. Did I mention I loved to cook? We relaxed, kicked back, watched everyone play Guitar Hero, ate Panera, and played Scene it TV again, oh yeah, I won!! Again…

Ate cupcakes and everyone sang. Hung out with my friend and her men. Kissed Phyllis a ton of times. And praised God for a great birthday. My daughter went and worshipped the Lord (doesn’t get much better than that, parents, does it?!)!

It wasn’t a vacation to Hawaii (though I am sure I would have loved that too) it was a day just for me. The kind of days I like with cards and kisses, hugs and friends. As I sit at the end of the perfect day, listening to the music score to Maid in Manhatten (one of my favoritest movies EVER) I sit here, knowing and feeling completely loved. I actually felt God put His arms around me and hug me. My friends, birthdays aren’t about presents, they aren’t about how many people called or didn’t call. It’s about celebrating life, celebrating with people who love us. Something I think we should do everyday.

Thank you, all of you who made my day special with a blog comment, an email, for flowers, a phone call, a prayer, to those who broke bread with me (literally) at Panera, for those who traveled across the state to share my day. For the beautiful daughter who made me the most beautiful pillow for my bed. Thank you all for loving me, I love you too!! Thank you God for loving me so much.

When the first day of your year starts out this great, you know great things are in store!!

Gen 1:31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good

Monday, January 01, 2007

some stuff about me`

When Phyllis was 5 I got her the book ‘all about me’ by Dr. Seuss. Here are my answers (some of them!) since today is my birthday. Turned 34. It’s 3 birthdays more than my mom got, never really thought I’d live this long. But I have a beautiful daughter who makes me want to live until she’s 100! I have a God who loves me like crazy and I am excited about the coming year’s wondrous possibilities. That’s the one good thing about a birthday on New Year’s Day; you start the year completely new.

My name is Margie
I don’t care if you like my name or not
That’s my name and it’s the only one I’ve got!

I’m a girl
I weigh too many pounds
I am 5’5”
I have all my teeth except those 4 pesky wise ones.
My nose is cute even though I’ve been told it looks like Miss Piggy
My eyes are green
I don’t wear glasses
I have freckles…
My house is a house in a town
My house has lots of windows
My house has 3 beds
My house has a few pictures on the walls
My house has lots of steps
There are 12 forks in my house
My house has 2 keyholes
In my house there are many lights
We have 5 clocks
I eat like a horse (and look like one too)
My favorite food is Roma Salad and Tiramisu
And please don’t give me olives, I can’t stand them!
My birthday is January 1
I will have 34 candles
If you really want to give me a birthday present, here is what I want most: a new pair of walking shoes (but if it costs too much, forget it).
I go to school by: (I finished!!)
My favorite teacher’s name is: Bacile, she was my 2nd grade teacher, and I loved Mr. Lawara who taught science in 8th grade and helped me with math in 9th grade.
I study many things. I like English best. I like social studies worst.
I am a good student.
Here are some interesting things about me:
I have read about 100 books
My favorite book is Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein.
I am right handed
I can stand on my hands for 0 seconds
My feet are ticklish
My favorite pet is Gabbie
Some secret things I know:
My favorite color is brown, green, and navy
My best friend is a boy & a girl
My best friend’s name is Dani & Christie
Here is how you spell it backwards: inad & eitsirhc
Sometimes I get mad at people
My longest walk was 6 miles
My longest bike ride was 10 miles
My longest car ride was 6 hours
My longest plane ride was 4 hours
My longest fish I caught about 14 inches
My longest swim who knows I could swim forever!
I collect turtles and precious moments

My favorite flower are Daisies
My favorite sport is football but not on my birthday
I sing in the bathtub
I am not a great whistler
I hum better than I whistle
My favorite musical instrument is the drums
I am pretty neat
I talk in my sleep
I get up at 6 AM or so
I don’t make funny noises
When I grow up I want to be the office manager of Metro or own my own restaurant or be a speaker!

This was all about me!