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)


Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Trying to focus on the right things

I am trying not to focus my whole life on losing weight and food. That's a battle considering I go to bed thinking about breakfast, before or as I am eating breakfast I'm thinking about lunch, during lunch I am thinking about dinner... and then snacks. I was going to make scrambled eggs for breakfast but i didn't get up in time, so I had plain oatmeal with peanutbutter and pieces of banana in it (I hate oatmeal but the peanut butter and the banana made it tolerable). Not as good as eggs or McDonald's, but we're supposed to eat to live, not live to eat. Somehow, I got that confused all these years. Gotta get those words in the right order. I am tracking my calories (for free!) on http://caloriecount.about.com/, it's pretty cool because they even rate your food, for example if you are looking for a peanut butter, which ones are better for you than others, Jif PB is a C+, while regular PB, chunky is B. Helps to evaulate choices... hmmm... pretty cool. The only thing I didn't like (because I like INSTANT results) is that I may not reach my goal weight until 2010. Ugh, that seems a long time away.

I brought my camera to work so you can see the beautiousness that I get to walk in. I was thinking what a blessing it is that there is a beautiful wooded area behind our parking lot.

I started reading 'Believing God' by Beth Moore. I am in Chapter 1 and taking it kind of slow, sinking it in, not just speeding through it. This part of the book really hit me last night. She says she has to remember this in all things.

God is who He says He is.

God can do what He says He can do.

I am who God says I am.

God's word is alive and active in me.

I can do all things in Christ.

How true is all that? I think that if we remember to live by those 5 sentences, we can't go wrong. I love the 4th one, God's work is alive and active in me. It is a gentle reminder that we need to always stay in God's Word to help with the other 4. Think about it... if you want to know who God is, read about who He is. If you want to know about what He can do, read about it. If you want to know who you are in Christ, and who He says you are, read about it, listen for the Holy Spirit to tell you about who you are. And the last one, I can do ALL things in Christ. If you know all those things, you know that God has saved you, He has redeemed you, and in Him, you have, you are strong, and wise, you have joy and love.

Wow.

“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ,”- Philippians 1:9-10

Monday, September 29, 2008

A journey of 1000 miles...

...begins with a single step.

I don't know exactly how I am going to deal with the fact that I hate myself for what I've become. Don't say to me that "God made me this way". Because He didn't. Too many cheezits, cheese, nachos, pop, McDonald's, bad choices at resturaunts and at home, too much on my plate, cupcakes, cookies, and my lack of self-control made me this way.

But one cookie didn't make me fat, and so I must remember that just like it went on, it has to come off one ounce or even pound at time. One choice at a time. It means eating homemade roasted veggies without any oil instead of a bag of chips with my lunch. It means drinking ALL my water EVERYDAY. It means walking on my lunch hour. Good habits formed and continued.

And with the advice of a good friend, it means setting a goal of an accomplishment other than a number on a tag or a number on a scale. For her, a half marathon, for me, I'm not sure yet.

I've decided that living a life hating myself is no way to live. But it's me, on the inside and the outside, that can change it, only me (with a lot of prayer).

And maybe someday when someone texts me again saying "You're CRAZY beautiful" I will believe it.

Isaiah 35:8-9
8 And a highway will be there;
it will be called the Way of Holiness.
The unclean will not journey on it;
it will be for those who walk in that Way;
wicked fools will not go about on it.
9 No lion will be there,
nor will any ferocious beast get up on it;
they will not be found there.
But only the redeemed will walk there,

Sunday, September 28, 2008

what's wrong...

most people haven't said anything (even people who claimed to be my friends) but really, my brain is on overload and my heart is broken. For me. I know it sounds selfish, but my heart is broken and I haven't figured out how to fix it. You see I used to be thin, a perfect 8, and depending on the pants, I could get in a 6 pants. And i thought I still had 25 pounds to lose, but I knew (I KNEW!) I looked good. The cost of that? 4 hours minimum every week at the gym. I worked out 5 days a week and 3 of those days I did two-a-days. Yes, I even looked good in sweatpants. I looked and felt great as far as my health was.

I highlighted my hair every 4 weeks, 5 weeks at the most, nails always done. I never went out of the house without makeup unless it was to the gym or the tanning booth. Perfect everything.

I say this because someone sent me a text that said "you are crazy beautiful" and I thought to myself, yeah right, you're nuts! And it's haunted me since. I don't care how beautiful you think I am on the inside, I hate who I am on the outside. Ok, there I said it. I hate who I am and somehow I can't find a way to change it. I want to scream when someone says I am beautiful because I don't see it at all. Sure I have great things about me, but I am huge! And today I tried on my jeans that I haven't had on in awhile, and they didn't fit. I know what to do, I just don't know if I can with this crazy schedule I have and all the stress. If I get back there, will I stay there?

So I went for a walk today while the casserole for Alive dinner was cooking. It was just a half hour but it was a start. I know that I can't stay this way because I can't continue to hate myself, it's not good for me.

I've been holding on to this for months.

Psalm 61:1-2 1 Hear my cry, O God;
listen to my prayer.
2 From the ends of the earth I call to you,

I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A Saturday in my brain...

1. I went to the scrapbook store... bought nothing! yeah me!
2. how come paper wasn't on sale at Michael's that I needed?
3. Walmart is cheaper than Target... but they don't have the toilet cleaning things I needed.
4. I think I am liking Aldi's better than Savelot except the meat.
5. Hey retards on Fort Street, you can't impeach Bush unless there's a good reason, not because you don't like him. idiots!
6. By the way, while I'm talking about it... did you know that most decisions are made by the house and congress... who holds the majority? hmmm. idiots.
7. You union people who try to tell us who to vote tell us to buy American... you also said vote for Granholm... she drives a Honda... and rents an 'american made' car when she visits your plants. and tell me, how is that working for ya'? DUH!
8. I can't wait to see my family tonight!
9. Yummm... homemade chicken noodle soup today and 100 or more cupcakes are going to be made.
10. Pastors should not be motivational speakers
11. Jesus, you're my healer, you're more than enough for me.
12. My brain is a dark and scary place, I can't believe you got a glimpse.

1 Chron 16:32 Let the sea resound, and all that is in it; let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Things I need


We're building Ashley a room in the basement... and if you know anyone who is getting rid of any of these things... let me know! I am hoping to maybe go to the thrift store and get some stuff for cheap! But just in case... I thought I would ask :)

1. A twin bed, including mattresses (CHECK!)
2. A dresser (CHECK! CHECK!!)
3. Drywall
4. 2 x 4 studs
Thankfully I have a TON of bedding!
John 15:7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.
Just an update... the money just came for the rest of the stuff!!! HA! God is soo good!
**my daily post is below.

Not what I expected


Have you ever seen the movie Under the Tuscan Sun with Diane Lane? total chic flick, I like those kind. She gets divorced, really because her hubby leaves her for someone else. She goes on vacation to Tuscany only to decide to buy a rundown house and fix it up. At one point she says she wants to feed a family in the house, have a wedding, and have a baby born in the house. I think in her mind she wants those for herself. The advice given: "you can have all those things".

She finds family in friends and the guys fixing up her house and she makes glorious dinners for them. Check. Her neighbor's daughter falls in love with the polish guy, they get married in her house. check. check. Her friend has a baby in the house. check check check. All the desires of her heart fulfilled.

My life is not as I imagined. But I love it.

Yesterday I made Thursday Dinner. it's the only night of the week we are home and it's the night of the week when I cook dinner. Ashley now lives with us, Gibbie (Phyllis's boyfriend), Muscle Mike (who lives in the upstairs), and Favot came over for dinner. We had pork chops, cheese potatoes, fresh green beans, yellow dry cake mix with peaches and ice cream.

I worked my butt off cooking and doing dishes, and watching these people I love enjoying it was wonderful! We all sat around while the girls made things for their lockers with scripture verses and decorated their planners or whatever they called them. Just living life in love.

I think one of my heart's desires completed... check! Having a big family. I truly believe that God gives us the desires of our hearts only to fulfill them, in His time.

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

"my gut"


My daughter will watch someone for months before she trusts someone. As an example, she made sure Muscle Mike was who he said he was for SIX MONTHS before she really talked to him. He was who he said he was.

I know someone else that she watched for about that long too, and she wasn't so sure about him, and low and behold, she felt he wasn't who he said he was. And I think she was right.

I am kind of the same way. There are people who I believe that are trustworthy from the moment I meet them (like Sara), the Holy Spirit gives me the 'go ahead' but most people I keep them at a distance until I feel that they can be trusted.

I had met someone who didn't seem like she had it all together. People think she's awesome and I think she has many good traits, however, I think she's like a used car salesman, she talks a good game, but not sure at this point if she can deliver. It's my opinion. I don't have a good feeling about it. I trust that true character, in due time, is always revealed.

Another person I just met. I have one word. Shady. I've watched this person a couple times now, and I'm watching him 'vi for position'. He's playing a game. Targeting younger people because they are easier to win over. Not as much experience. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't really think I am.

I'm like a mama bear, I watch over my cubs very carefully, and should some harm even approach my cubs. Let's just say that it won't be pretty.

The Holy Spirit is so powerful. I think that when we are open to hearing what He has to say, He is that feeling we get, known as "our gut", it is an amazing thing, it's like pure guidance. I've learned that if I have that uneasy feeling, and I go against it, I am usually sorry. And I honestly haven't found a time when that feeling is wrong.

John 14:15-16 15"If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

SYATP



I often feel as though I take a lot of flack for loving teenagers. I feel that people look at me and wonder "she's letting another teenager move into her home, and this time, she's building her a room, ugh".

This is what I think. I think I was made to love teenagers. I really do love them. People say "too much of a good thing..." let me finish the sentence... "is a good thing".
Today is See You At The Pole. You can hit the link and check it out, but here's the basics, kids from ALL OVER THE WORLD get together and pray for their schools, for their friends, for their cities, for God to MOVE! They pray for themselves, they pray for each other. I went to support some of the students that go to Alive. I was going to go to Roosevelt, but there was already 3 leaders going there, so I went to Lincoln Park High. I was a few minutes late, I forgot my phone, then the camera, then the cord for the camera. Ugh! satan, STOMP! So I got there, I took some pictures, I prayed for 'my kids' and the other kids. It was amazing, it was like I could feel the presence of the Holy Spirit travel through the doors. Oh, it was great! When it was all over one of 'my kids' looked up and saw me, and she was so excited (I'm getting misty thinking about it!) that I was there. I had stood behind her and prayed and she didn't even know :). I was so blessed by just the look on her face, it will forever be etched in my heart, but that look was as if God said to me "see, I need you here, you are making a difference, for ME!".

Tonight is 1721 Worship where the students of downriver unite in worship to a God who loves us and moves in and through us based on John 17:21. I can't wait!!
John 17:20-21 20"My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Lessons from tomato plants

I have a great garden this year, it was kind of an experiment, I didn't have a ton of veggies to can or freeze but I didn't have to buy one cuke, one tomato, or zucchini once the veggies started coming in. So I thought it was a success, I learned a lot about what worked and what didn't, again, success.

Did you know that you can trim your tomato plants in order for them to produce fruit and for that fruit to ripen? If you don't, sometimes the green maters never turn red. Since I don't eat green tomatoes, that seems like it would be a disaster. If you prune the 'male' branches back so the 'female' (the ones with flowers and tomatoes) get more sun, more fruit, ripe yummy fruit. How about that!? Pretty sweet.

My crop is winding down, I have some green ones still on the vine, and I want to reap harvest as long as I can, so I was pruning today. I began to think about all the extra branches in my life that need to be trimmed back for me to produce ripe fruit, to be fruitful for the Lord if you will. And the passage below came to mind. And then at Alive it's the passage that Adam spoke on, and I really had no idea that's what he was going to speak on... pretty amazing, huh?

On Friday I went into 'Margie Overload' it's the point that i should have turned back 1 hour prior. But I didn't and I stayed. And by an hour I say that metaphorically not really. I should have seen the signs but I kept going, and right over the bridge I went. I have too much in my life. I am called to serve with the Youth, whatever doesn't fit with that, just doesn't fit, and I know it and I know that's where I belong. And instead of saying no and possibly disappointing someone or someones, I say yes, unfortunatly, that takes a toll on my mental capacity. I don't have much as it is... I need to do some pruning. I need to let God ripen me so I am of great use for Him.

I was also thinking about how I let the things of the world, and people who should not be in sphere of influence, influence me... and it starts out slow but then is a slippery slope. It even made me think about how we welcome the anti-Christ into our homes. Ugh.

So pruning back it will be for me. Sonshine on my life to prepare me for great ripening to 'feed' others in my life.

The lessons we learn from tomatoes. I never would have thought that I would have been fed through my mouth and through my spirit with this garden. Jesus is amazing, and I' m reaping the harvest 100-fold.

John 15:1-17 1"I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
5"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. 8This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
9"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands and remain in his love. 11I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. 15I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 17This is my command: Love each other.

I almost feel guilty...


almost.

Today I stayed home from church. I put the final coat on 3 of the oatmeal color (I worked on the bathroom until about 11 last night). I made a cake for Jon & Favot's b-day and steamed some spinach that was probably not going to make it a couple more days so I steamed it and it's going in the freezer for a later date.

My daughter was awaken to the smell of biscuits and gravy.

Sometimes we just need days where we do what needs to be done, even if it's a Sunday. I've been working but I feel rested. I feel like there is a sense of relief that things are getting accomplished. I don't know if that makes any sense to anyone but me...

More pictures to come of the bathroom when it's done... it will probably be another week...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I am


I read a blog, that was about "I am from" and I think Sara wrote one too a long time ago, however, I'm not so eloquent from the 'I am froms' so I will just tell you who I am.


I am a proud mom

I am a single mom

I am a college graduate

I am Youth staff for Jr. & Sr. High

I am a woman who loves Jesus

I am a woman loved by God

I am covered by grace

I am a home owner

I work in sales

I am easily annoyed

I am a registered voter who votes

I am a volunteer

I am funny

I am a lover of music, all music

I am someone who needs to lose 60 pounds

I am someone who loses motivation to lose said 60 pounds

I am a lover of children

I am servant (I really try!)

I am easily hurt

I am a good friend

I am an aunt

I am a scrapbooker

I am a cousin

I am a listener

I am a crier

I am gift giver

I am a reader

I am someone who rarely finishes a book

I am a great cook

I am a good baker

I am mom who gives her child lots of opportunities

I have a great smile

I am someone who doesn't smile enough
While I was driving around... I realized I forgot a few...
...I'm also high-strung
...I don't relax easily
... I'm a hard worker
... I have a big mouth
... I let people manipulate me until I can't stand it anymore because i feel like a pretzel
... I'm a little too passionate
... I keep things bottled up way too much

I have Jesus living in me
Phil 2:15 so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe

Thursday, September 18, 2008

SO EXCITED!!


I know I already posted today but holy cats! We are so excited!! We went to Roosevelt tonight to meet with Conductor Eric Dale Knapp about our trip to Austria. Ok, now I understand that in the big scheme of things... like Jesus dying on the cross, this isn't much. But let me tell you, it's a blessing, nonetheless.

I cannot believe that I will be watching my daughter perform in Austria at the 200 anniversary of the Hayden Festival, a world music festival! I'm absolutely so thankful that God can hear my heart and not depend on me for words.

Me being the dork I am, I took pictures of him speaking and one with him and Phyllis and one with her teacher, Maestro Knapp, and Phyllis. I don't care if I get dork mom of the year awards. I took pictures and my daughter was embarrassed, but she knows I love her and I'm SO proud of her!

So today... I'm a proud mom, a blessed mom, and thankful to Jesus for making this way for us!

Psalm 69:30 I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.
An example of what she is going to be singing!!

Fruit of the Spirit... again


Gal 5:22-23 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

After reading Pastor Chilly’s ** guest writers (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control.)last week about the fruit of the spirit, which God had already laid on my heart prior to that, I have concluded one thing. I am not a good Christian. I don’t know if there is such a thing really as a “good” Christian. Because if we were really all that “good” then would we really need Christ? Anyway, maybe the conclusion is that I really have a really really long way to go, and if it’s only when we are done learning what God has to teach us, I may live until I am 257,893 year old. That would be one for the record book. And that’s a lot of lessons…

And by the way it’s FRUIT of the spirit, not fruitS of the spirit. I think it may be an all or nothing thing, but I’m really not sure. I’m working on picking up a study on it, would love to do
Beth Moore’s but it’s $10 MORE than anyone elses. And that just makes me crazy, but that’s another blog… But I am trying to figure out which one to do...

So let’s break it down…

Love. I think for the most part, I got the love thing down. I love big. Sometimes maybe a little too big, but there is no doubt in my mind that I love. But after examining the rest of the fruit, maybe not enough.

Joy. Joy is not dependent on circumstances but your heart. For the most part, I think I have that one too. There is a lot of joy in my heart. I’m usually pretty joyful no matter where I am.

Peace. There is not much to check there. Peace, maybe piece, like piece of cake, brownie, cheese, pizza. I have the piece but not the peace. I am quite unsettled most of the time.

Patience. Nope. Not that one either. I want it, and I want it now!

Kindness. I sometimes have this one. I have two people in my life right now that I just am having a difficult time with them. One is a snitch, and the other is annoying. The first one is very difficult for me to even comprehend. I just can’t get why someone would “snitch” on someone and just not address the issue with the person not snitching. The second one is a little annoying, however, he TRIES to annoy me to be funny, unfortunately, that makes me see nothing good about him, because all I see is annoying. No kindness there.

Goodness. According to what I read (because I haven’t done my study yet) goodness = usefulness. I would say that I use my gifts making me ‘useful’. I often feel like maybe I should do more… but I do what I feel like I am doing what I am called to do. What God wants me to do rather what I wants me to do. I’ve got some studying ahead of me.

Faithfulness. For the most part (that’s my out) I am faithful. I love God, however, if I was more faithful to living His way and His word, maybe I’d have the rest of the ‘fruit’.

Gentleness. Is a bull gentle in a china shop? I’m not so gentle. I don’t know why but I am empathetic but because my whole life I’ve just had pull up my big girl panties and get on iwht my bad self, so I sometimes expect everyone else to do the same. However, I realize that could be part of the problem of my ‘missing’ fruit.

Self-control – I’m a “little” too passionate. I’ll leave it at that. Ugh.

I have a lot of work ahead of me. Fruit of the Spirit here I come. I can’t wait, with each bite, it will be pure God given knowledge.
Job 6:24 "Teach me, and I will be quiet; show me where I have been wrong.
**Pastor Chilly is from Real Church in Ham-town (I've been checking them out for awhile, hoping that in some way Alive/Fuel can serve with them). Netta (on the right is his beautiful spirited wife)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

God is good in all things

There is one thing I know for sure.

God isn't dependent on circumstances to be good.

He is good all the time, and all the time He is good. Let's make no mistake about that.

I am angry and sad. My cousin Wanda has breast cancer. I am no stranger to this horrible disease. And it makes me angry. IT MAKES ME ANGRY! To the point that if I could, I would turn hell over myself and stomp satan. But instead I will worship God. I will go in my bathroom, and I will sand to Hillsong United and I will worship because God is good.

I am sure I will cry and at some point I am sure that the sander will be in air, because I know that my God, our God, the one and only true God, is an awesome God, no matter the circumstances. My quote of the day is still right on... "there is a God in heaven, and He loves me". In crappy circumstances, I always remember this... it says in Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. I am not sure how this is all going to turn out, I know there will be pain, but in Jesus there is LIFE. And by His wounds we are healed (Isaiah 53:5).

I walked in that walk, I found healing that I never knew possible. I turned that horrible disease into a healing I never thought I would have. And I think I am destined to walk again, in VICTORY! My cousin WILL BE A BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR! I'm speaking it, I am claiming it! Please pray for her, pray for her husband, her children, Ben and Erin. That they know God through this, and all His goodness.

God is good in all circumstances. HE IS GOOD!!

Worship with me!


All I got right now... and it's all I need!

Quote of the Day (by me after I thought I deleted a file)...

"there is a God in heaven, and He loves me!"

Monday, September 15, 2008

Prayer Requests


We've got a lot going on at Alive and Fuel.

Camping Trip
Lock In
Battle of the Bands
Hang outs
Weekend Mission Trips
Retreats

And that is just our 'extras' that doesn't include our normal prepartion for Sunday and Monday services & Wednesday Night Core Groups. That doesn't include all the prayer that goes in for each student.

There's a lot going on in the life of Alive/Fuel Youth Ministry, it's burning bright for Jesus! To Him be the glory!

I guess I'm asking that you add Alive/Fuel and the leaders to your prayer lists. We need strength and wisdom, discernment, and most of all Love. We need the love of Christ to run in us, like a rushing stream, and then out of us in ways that reach the students.

We love You Lord
We worship You
Hope which was lost,
Now stands renewed.

I give my life
To honor this
The love of Christ
The Savior King!

(Words from Savior King by Hillsong United!)
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.”- 1 John 4:16

Sunday, September 14, 2008

WHOLEWHEAT OATMEAL BANANA PANCAKES

I got this recipe from Netta, one of my new blogs that I read. she uses skim milk, I used 2%.

1 C whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 C quick oatmeal
2 eggs , beaten
1 3/4 C milk
2 mashed bananas


Mix well.

Cook on hot griddle (use cooking spray).

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Jesus is in Everything

Today we had some major running around to do, Jo Ann Fabrics for some 'art' things needed for school, Phyllis wanted some kind of fabric, something about cotton to make a new purse...

I wanted to get some things for the 'encouragement table' for Alive... markers, papers, etc.

"Panera for lunch?" "Sure."

God is in all things, including Panera and remodeling the bathroom.

We went into Panera, and instantly... happy, even joyful. Over what? Creamy tomato soup and harvest salad. My two favorite Panera things! They are seasonal, so I was souper (get it!HA!) excited that they were back! I was giddy! Thank You Jesus. He's in all things.

I decided to remodel my bathroom, and by this, I mean paint it. I have 50's blue tile and my bathroom is sponge painted, and I am SICK of it. So I've decided that I am going to repaint, new colors... taupe and chocolate brown. I already got the shower curtain about a month ago, things are finally starting to slow down a little with the combination that I just can't wait to get it up! I picked up a can of mis-mixed paint for half price :) from ACO, it was the perfect color. God is in all things.

Also during this time, I've had to scrap all the paint off the tile from the edges with a razor blade and 7 in 1 tool, sounds exciting, it's not. But during that time, I prayed for a lot of things/people. I saw the fruits of my labor when I was done, and it looked so good. I was so thankful for Mike who showed me how to do it, got all the tools together so I could do it. It's going to take a little bit to get it done just because we are not home a lot but I am hoping in three weeks, it will be finished (because of my sponge painting, I've got to sand the WHOLE THING - again... Thank God for small bathrooms! see... He's in all things). I'm excited to see the transformation, in my bathroom and in me.

If Christ is in soup & salad, in repainting bathrooms, in small walls, He's surely living in me.

Today's Thankful List...
1. Corey Jacob is HERE!!
2. Harvest Salad & Creamy tomato soup
3. Fettucine Alfredo
4. Rain (I have green grass now!)
5. Muscle Mike
6. Kroger (I got bathroom cleaner cheaper than walmart!)
7. A dishwasher
8. DVR
9. Having a washer and dryer to do laundry
10. Phyllis


Deut 11:7 But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the LORD has done.

Friday, September 12, 2008

happy happy

I’m not sure how I “met” Mrs. Mac, but somehow she has become part of my life, and I love her! Someday I’ll make it to the mangy moose lodge to hug her in person. She awarded me with the Kreativ blogger award. I have to let you know about 6 things that make me happy and pass the award on to 6 friends.

The Award goes to:
Kelly because she really does have the most Kreativ Blog
Cheryl just because I love reading her blog
Aunt Pat who is joyful and makes THE best potato salad
Stacy because I love her
Kaymac because she’s full of love and laughter
Becky because she’s full of joy

What makes me happy… oh lots of things make me happy, I can only pick 6

1. Phyllis and the joy her life brings me, I love being her mom, I love helping her deal with life, I love helping her plan what is going to bring her happiness in life.
2. Staying up late (even when we’re really tired) talking about “the kids”, what God is doing in their lives
3. The Alive Band. I love the Alive band, I love worshipping with them.
4. God and His never ending love and grace!
5. Roma CafĂ©. Its my absolute favorite place to eat. When I get married, I’m having the dinner there. (It's in Eastern Market)
6. Making dinner for my family

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Miss Phyllis


Miss Phyllis now has a blog...

http://toputasmileonyourface.blogspot.com/

Man, she's awesome!

Where were you?

I am too young to remember where I was when JFK or Elvis died, but I can remember 9-11-01.

I was at work, coming back from a meeting and Lynne Fugedi ran up to me and told me that a plane crashed into the WTC, twice. I remember watching it on the big screen at work. They sent us home. I remember hugging Phyllis a little tighter that night.

We were scheduled to fly to Disney on 9-17-01. It was our first real vacation, we were going to Disney, also said to be a target for another bombing. We didn't even know if we were going to have flights that day, and no back up plan. Sunday was the first day of regularly running flights so we went. Not scared at all.

I don't fear big things, but I can run in circles like a crazy woman for small things. "don't sweat the small stuff" (and don't pet the sweaty stuff). Whatever. I think small things matter more than big things. I think that people hold on to the small things more than the big things. You can disagree with me, but in my life, little things can make me super happy or super crazy.

One of the greatest gifts I have is to see God in little things. To watch His glory in small steps, in little movements, and then to see the final picture. In the tragedy of 9-11 God moved. It says that in Romans 8:28 that God works for all those who love Him, and I know that's true. He gave strength to rescue workers, wisdom to decision makers, hearts of love for those who spent endless hours helping and loving afterwards.

Psalm 9:11 Sing praises to the LORD, enthroned in Zion; proclaim among the nations what he has done.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Love is the way


I’m always amazed when people say “I don’t know how you do it” and Sunday she walked away saying “you are such an inspiration”

I just think to myself “I’m always tired and my house is always a mess". And I am in constant prayer. I think that’s the key. Not the tired part but the constant prayer thing. I’m not that smart or emotionally stable, but I love God and I talk to Him all the time. Not only that, I am open to what He has to tell me, and quite often, I honestly don’t always like what He has to say, but it’s not my job to like it, it’s my job to be obedient.

I have a heart for this generation of young people. There is a song that the Alive Band has written, Final Hour, my favorite part is “I’LL FIGHT FOR THIS GENERATION”. It means that I can’t give up. I’ve got Power behind me. I know a lot of people don’t understand, and I don’t put the hours in like Adam, our AMAZING Youth Pastor and his BEAUTIFUL wife Katie, but my life revolves around Youth Ministry, whether people understand it or not. And sometimes, I just don’t understand it myself.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how much I want to be married, life is more important (I also figure if I am doing what I am supposed to do, God will take care of the rest). A life that is only found in Christ. Everlasting Salvation – that kind of life! I meet enough kids to know that they are hurting, they’ve made bad choices, but they also pay the consequence of the bad choices for generations before them. And most of them, let’s just be honest, don’t feel loved, so they become selfish. We need to love. We need to love each other. And we let each other down, however, we still love each other. I tell Phyllis, while loving (and being frustrated), we need to have love and grace like peanut butter. Just like the JIF commercials where the knife just smears it on and there is no bread torn, just a big ol’ heaping of smooth peanut butter. I don’t know if that makes sense to anyone but us, but it works.

I am not sure how it is I do it. I know that God continues to work in and through me, and I am just the conduit from Him to them. And that’s all that matters.

“Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.”- Psalm 143:10

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Beautiful

I had a different post. But i decided it was kind of lame. So here's my new post.... this one is kind of lame too... but it's my blog!




Friday, September 05, 2008

Reuben Dip

1 c sour cream
1 c mayo (NOT miracle whip)
1 16 oz can saurkraut, drained and squeezed dry
1/2 c finely chopped onion
1/3 lb deli style corned beef
1 c swiss cheese
2 T horseradish

Serve with Triscuits

Mix everything together. Bake 30 minutes at 350*




This is a new favorite!

"The times I'm most frustrated with my lifeis usually because I'm only thinking of MY life."

I read this quote from Netta and I thought… oh man that is so true…

I think the times when I struggle is when I become a sponge and I am completely self-absorbed. Sure we all have things we can work on, we all struggle, but my struggles seem like mountains instead of grains of sand when I think about me.

I’ve been praying about something. Something that God had laid on my heart and I think it might come to fruition. I think that I am completely starting to see the vision of God in it. I am excited, and I am going to let go of the things irritating me or at least I am going to try. I have to start somewhere, and I think that’s where I am going to start. If I hold on to crap, it’s just going to get stinkier and stinkier until I am overwhelmed with the smell, and in a gross way, consumed by it. Until that’s all I can see. Until it seems like it’s the only thing I am surrounded by. Ick.

I feel like I have been doing 2 steps forward, 1 step back lately. I have to remember that I am still one step ahead. I know that some of you may be reading this blog and think “what the heck is wrong with her?”, let me tell you, I wonder that about myself quite often.

God lives in me. I am a child of God. Loved by a God in a way that I will never understand, covered by grace. And yet, I still am like “what the heck?” I won’t stop forging ahead; I won’t stop living in the light, loving in a world that doesn’t like it. Fighting battles for those who can’t fight for themselves, and I probably won’t stop being attacked. But I am loved, I am protected. I am already won. And there’s more that we can’t let die in the battle for their lives.


Gal 5:16-23 16So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. 17For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.


19The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.


22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Letting go with a new heart


"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me."Psalm 51:10-12

I have not been one to settle into the Psalms and buckle down and read them. I know they are beautiful, I know that often, they are the words that speak what my heart feels. I often feel like David. I think he had a much better heart than me. But sometimes I am ‘up’ God is so awesome and I can’t stop praising Him, and sometimes while I know that God is amazing, I am shouting, pleading, and begging Him to rescue me.

I have really been struggling with some “stuff” lately and think “it doesn’t feel much different than when I was rolling around in my sin, maybe I should just go back”. My heart always stops me. Because I know that’s not really true. I know that now, it does feel a lot different, it’s just me, being a little more dramatic than I need to be. I am feel like I am constantly begging God to come into my heart and change it to be more like His. I am easily annoyed. And although I don’t like to admit it, I can hold onto things for weeks, even months. For example, I know someone who is a “snitch” and tattles. It drives me crazy, I want to scream “MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS, WORRY ABOUT YOURSELF AND WHAT YOU WORK ON AND LEAVE US ALONE”, and maybe I just need to find a nice way to address the issue, but I’ve been harboring it for almost a year, ugh!

I want to be renewed with joy and love but I need to let go of the yuckiness that hides in the cracks of my heart. Sara (I’m paraphrasing) once told me that in order for God to put something new in my hand, I needed to let go of the things I am holding on it. With this tight grip I have, I am going to release it, even if it means that a little each day I release my grip until my hand is wide open for new blessings to be put in it.

“What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching, with faith and love in Christ Jesus. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.”- 2 Tim 1:13-14

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

First day of school

Today is the first day of school for most around here. There are a few schools who have already started and at least one that doesn't start until tomorrow.
I hate that summer is over. I love that a new season is fast approaching. I can't help but think of the lives that are going to be changed in a more positive way this year. I think of the hope that comes from learning something new and loving it. I think of "my kids" who have been and will continue to pray for their friends who need Jesus. I think of my daughter who is preparing for this year by putting bible verses in her locker. To help reach her friends who say "God can't love me, I've already done too much". Here's the thing, she just didn't pick any scripture, she chose the ones she thought were best suited for her friends. I was so proud. I always have to laugh when God puts scripture in our hearts and those close to us to remind us that He wasn't kidding when He told (not asked) us to stand on His Word. Because as it says in John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God"... The two she chose...

1 Tim 4:12 Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.

Romans 8:38-39 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

She doesn't mess around, my daughter, she is true and constant about where she stands with God and in her mind she can't figure out why you shouldn't want to live in the life of Christ. It's easier. Sure she struggles, and she watches her friends struggle. In her mind, there's no other way, but His way.

Today starts back peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwiches, it starts back the routine of school (and being late for work because I drop her off). Today reminds me of all the days I've dropped her off and taken her out but now, I don't do that. Today starts the hope of Christ that will run through the school and through the love in the lives of the kids who are His.

I think of this year, and I want God to raise up the teachers who can encourage the students who love Him. I think of the students who need to be bold and brave about what God has done in their lives. I think of the students who at such a young age who blame God for the crap that they live through.

This year, I want assemblies led by Youth Pastors (Adam and others!) that teach the lessons of Christ even if we can't mention Him but we can invite them to Alive (or other Youth Groups). I want God to literally blow the doors off the schools with His love. I want to run out of seats in Youth Groups all over Downriver so that the students can learn more about Him and love Him more and more everyday! I want to see a changed world, changed by real Hope that the kind that presidential canidates promise, REAL HOPE, I want to see the world changed by love, HIS LOVE.

I know that God can do "exceedingly abundantly more than we ask for or even think" (Pastor Clark from GCH always says that - and I believe it too!). I know that God can do all these things and more!
Let the praying commence! May God move in love and grace through our schools like we've never seen!

Exodus 1:7 but the Israelites were fruitful and multiplied greatly and became exceedingly numerous, so that the land was filled with them.

Monday, September 01, 2008

On the Menu

1. Spaghetti
2. Carrot Cake
3. Mac & cheese
4. Puppy chow
5. Taco Dip
6. Caeser Salad
7. Rolls
8. Pistachio Fluff
9. Chili-cream cheese Dip
10. Veggies & Dip

Today is our "celebration of love' as we send Kirstin off! More like we watch in awe of the love she has for people she hasn't even met yet. I serve with her at alive! and I've watched her grow and grow over the last couple years. She's a young woman. She beautiful on the inside and out.

I can't help but think that she got this great example not only from God but from her mom, as well. I can't help but think that through all we go through as mom's and no matter how 'love' looks in any family, that's our most important job. To love our kids. I think her mom has done an awesome job showing Kirsten how love looks.

“Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.”- Proverbs 22:6