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 28, 2009

I can understand...

...why people want to kill themselves. I mean, I've had this discussion before. But I am going to put it out there.


... in the midst of being surrounded by people you can feel completely alone.


...that when we can get caught up in taking care of everyone else, no one takes care of us, and we just don't understand why. And it's not that we don't like taking care of everyone else, but it can be a lonely job.



...that you just don't really feel like you matter, even though you know you do.


...that feeling of looking down on an expressway from the service drive and just wanting to drive off of it. Or seeing that abdandoned building and wanting to crash into it.

I typed that all yesterday. I will tell you, that at any given moment I was fighting back tears. There wasn't really anything anyone can say to me, I just hit the book. You know The One.

And then I look at today's scripture:

Mark 9:35Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, "If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all."

Here's the deal. Yesterday I was feeling like I was last, but I wanted to be first. I can't be first, because it's not about me. And I don't know what the deal was, I don't know if I was under attack or what but at 3:30AM this morning, I woke up sweating worrying about everything, my job, the stimulus packages, if China decided to cash in all the treasury bonds, and I was seriously freaking out. And then I realized... Hey Knucklehead, you have no control over ANY of that. Gave a big slap to satan, told him to leave me alone, and rolled over and slept soundly until the alarm went off.

I always have a lot going on...

Saturday is a big night. We have 1721 at the church, it's based on 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. It's a HUGE worship night for the Youth of Downriver. I love it! I love that kids who go to different youth groups in different schools all come together to worship a God, not just any God, THE GOD, who loves us and is worthy.

I am nothing by myself, but in Him, I am everything. I should worship in everything I do.

30 things about me

1. Margie is not my REAL name
2. Dearborn will always be where I consider home
3. I'm old
4. i went to Fordson
5. i really do love my job
6. I've never been married.
7. i hate slackers and people who are mooches because they are too lazy to work
8. Roma Cafe in Eastern Market is my fave
9. I love to serve
10. i probalby love you, but if I don't - I think you suck... no in between with me
11. I want to be married
12. I still love my best friend from 6th grade
13. i think Mark Wahlberg is hot
14. I have many good friends but no best friend
15. The Word of God convicts me
16. i pray so much I can't even tell you how much!
17. i love going to the movies!!
18. i want to have more children
19. im a cleaning freak sometimes.
20. i love to shop at only one thrift store
21. I love going to church
22. It gets on my nerves when I say I go to church and people say "we are the church"
23.i feel like I'm always stressed out
24. i hate being in crowds, even when I know everyone
25. i love to read
26. i rarely take a shower, I love taking baths
27. i love spending time with Phyllis
28. I love jr high and high schoolers
29. i think the Alive band is AMAZING
30. i love Jesus... that should have been my first one...

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Columbia

Phyllis will be going to Columbia in July without me. That seems wierd that my baby will be so far away from me for such a long time.

I'm really not worried about her. I know she will handle herself just fine, she will work hard, study hard, love hard. I am more worried about the other people going. I am more worried that they will be a distraction to her. I am worried that maybe they weren't raised to act respectfully.
I think some people think I am over-protective. I am not OVER protective, for the record I am protective just right. Some people just choose not to be involved as much in their children's lives. She laughed when I said that I would be at every showing of the musical. And I will be. I don't care what comes up, nothing will be more important. And yes, I am going to Austria. Not because I think she can't handle it, I am going because I am proud and I love her, and I want to experience it with her, not just through the stories she tells. I want to see what she sees.

She is going to Columbia. I've had people make comments that she shouldn't go, or that they will have something to say about it. Here's what I have to tell anyone who has anything negative to say about it... Be quiet. I don't want to hear it. She was entrusted (by God) to me, not you. It's always been my decision for the things that go on in her life, and unless I get married and my husband adopts her, it will always be my decision (guided by God). If you think I am so naive that I don't know what can happen, you're wrong, I just choose not focus on it, I choose to focus on the TRUTH. She was brought to this earth to bring GLORY TO GOD, and she does that everyday. And this will be no different. Glory to God.

Psalm 19
1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
2 Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they display knowledge.

3 There is no speech or language
where their voice is not heard. [a]

4 Their voice [b] goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun,

5 which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.

6 It rises at one end of the heavens
and makes its circuit to the other;
nothing is hidden from its heat.

7 The law of the LORD is perfect,
reviving the soul.
The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy,
making wise the simple.

8 The precepts of the LORD are right,
giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the LORD are radiant,
giving light to the eyes.

9 The fear of the LORD is pure,
enduring forever.
The ordinances of the LORD are sure
and altogether righteous.

10 They are more precious than gold,
than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
than honey from the comb.

11 By them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.

12 Who can discern his errors?
Forgive my hidden faults.

13 Keep your servant also from willful sins;
may they not rule over me.
Then will I be blameless,
innocent of great transgression.

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.

Monday, January 26, 2009

No more relaxing :)

I’ve been reading the bible to complete in a year. It’s been pretty amazing how when our (by our... I mean my) hearts are open how God can speak to us (by us, I mean me). In the last week or so it’s been pretty evident that there were things I needed to hear.

I’ve kind of been consumed by Phyllis’s maybe reoccurrence of JRA. It seems that some days it’s all I can think about or pray about. I’ve been rehashing the past. And I think of Lion King where Timon & Pumba say “you’ve got to leave your past behind you”. That’s where it belongs.
On my desk, I have a little saying on my desk that says:

There are two days we should not worry about.
YESTERDAY, with it’s mistakes and heartaches, they are gone forever.
TOMORROW is the other day. It has problems and possibilities; but until the sun rises they are unborn and unreal.
TODAY is the only day left.
Anyone can fight a battle for just one day.
Only when we add the burdens of those other two days are we likely to fail.

It reminds me of Matthew 6 (which is one of my very favorite scriptures… probably because I have a tendency toward worry – I often feel like this one was written directly for me).

25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life[b]?
28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.


I was thinking and praying about the scripture I read yesterday in Matthew 14:
31Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. "You of little faith," he said, "why did you doubt?"

WHY AM I WORRYING? If I am really going to let God handle it, then I am going to let God handle it.

And then yesterday they officially announced the Overseas Mission Trip for Alive: Columbia. I have said all along that Phyllis could go. I even thought of a fundraiser for her (she’s (we’ve) got to come up with $1000). I’ve said all along “for the Glory of God” but somehow when the date was announced and it was officially official… My flesh kind of said “ugh… maybe” and then my spirit said “for the Glory of God”. And so she will go, and I will probably take a lot of flack for it, but God has entrusted her to me, but she is not mine, she is His, I say it again, she is HIS! And so I will trust that if the doors are opened, that she will walk through, safely, without harm. I will cry out to Him for this. That her life and her love will be changed forever because she has made an impact on someone’s life, for eternity.

Even me of little faith.

God has it all under control. He’s called us to be world changers whether it be the world around us, work, families. Or whether it is the world as in, you know, the world. I don’t understand, and I am not trying to be a jerk here, that if God has called you, He has sought after you (Isaiah 62:12 12 They will be called the Holy People, the Redeemed of the LORD; and you will be called Sought After, the City No Longer Deserted.), He has SAVED you, in Him you can REJOICE how if you believe His Word, that you cannot say WHENEVER, WHATEVER, WHEREVER you call me, Lord I will answer.

And so it goes, I will answer! I will say to the Lord, “You, dear God have it under control, God use me, I am Yours”.

I think I rambled today. My heart is exploding…

Psalm 16:8-11 8 I have set the LORD always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.
9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;

my body also will rest secure,
10 because you will not abandon me to the grave, [
c]
nor will you let your Holy One [d] see decay.
11 You have made [
e] known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Relaxing


I hate to say it but in the past two weeks I have been home 5 week nights with nothing scheduled. I looked at the clock the other day thinking it was like 9PM, nope 7:35, I thought to myself "this must be what normal people do". My house hasn't been tornado striken in 2 weeks. I've slept well.

I stopped getting my nails done. Partly to save money but mostly because it was just one more thing.

I don't feel less busy, just more relaxed. hmmmm... is this what normal people feel like?
Wish i was on that beach relaxing...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Interview...

I decided to let Lynette interview me... it was a post on her blog... so here goes...

1) Tell us how you came to follow Christ and tell us a little about your walk with the Lord.

My story is so long. I always laugh because people start it with the “I grew up in a Christian home or I didn’t”. I am the loud one in my family, and when I say that I mean my dad’s side. Typically I stick out and feel like I don’t fit in, I always joke and say I am the white trash in our family. I am sure there were days and nights that they didn’t stop praying for me because they didn’t know what else to do.

I made quite a big of bad choices along the way. In all those choices, somehow God blessed me with the most beautiful little girl. She is named after my mom who died when I was 16 months old.

My dad and I didn’t go to church much, weddings, funerals, and Christmas (but not Easter), however, I attended church with my gram & grandpa and my aunt. I even made all those sacraments… Baptism, Communion, Reconciliation, Confirmation…

I have never once doubted the presence of God. Ever. Unfortunatly though, He was more like my “get out of jail free card” not my Savior.

My daughter had arthritis and so many times I would lean on Him. I would say “I’m not strong enough” God help me, but in no way did I live my life for Him. I thought people who lived like I do now were kind of weird, I could justify almost anything, and I did.

And one Saturday my girlfriend who was keeping Phyllis overnight called and said “I’m taking Phyl to church with me”. Phyllis freaked out… it was a Baptist Church and she thought she would kneel or sit or stand at the wrong time (because that’s what Catholics do). I tried to explain to her that they don’t do that…. She didn’t believe me so I told her I would go. March 14, 2004

Three songs… Come, now is the time to Worship, I could sing of your love forever, and Draw me close. I wept through all three songs. I don’t know what it was about those three songs, but that was the day I knew my life had to change. Phyllis’s Sunday School teacher asked her if she thought we’d be back and her simple reply “oh yeah, my mom was crying” isn’t that funny!

From that day on, my life completely changed. I had a lot of growing to do and I still do. But everyday, I just surrender it all to Him.

And everyday, even when it’s not easy, I trust in Him.

That’s the short version… lol

2) What is your favorite season and WHY

My favorite season is Summer. Though it’s followed close by Spring and Fall. As a child, I don’t have many memories of any other seasons. My dad and I spent all our time together in the summer on our boat. Such great memories. I love the warmth, the events, the boat, swimming.
3) Where do you see yourself in 10 years? 20 years?

Its hard to determine where I’ll ever be because I never thought I’d be where I am today. That’s funny. I had all these dreams of being a wife, a mom of a big family, and a teacher. And I am none of those things. I am, however, a mom.

In ten years, I would hope that I would be married, and maybe with a couple more little kids. I am better suited for girls I think than boys because I am not very patient, but it really wouldn’t matter. My hope is that my mortgage would be paid off so that I could be debt free of all things.
I would love to be a speaker of the Word of God.
In twenty years, wow… I have no clue. Loving Grandbabies…

It doesn’t matter whether its ten or twenty year, the only thing I can say for sure that I will be doing is following the Lord.

4) Tell us your favorite memory raising your children and one from your own childhood.

I can’t really pick a favorite memory of raising my daughter, they are all my favorites. I love spending time with her, going to the movies or on field trips. I think my favorites are all the trips to the zoo. Money was pretty tight, but every year when I would get my income tax check I would purchase a year pass to the Detroit Zoo and we would hop in the car on a Saturday with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and go to the zoo. We would either get a pop or an ice cream. We would go by ourselves or she would take a friend or two. I still love the zoo.

My favorite childhood memory would be all the summers spent on the Detroit River on the boat. So many, I can’t pick any of them out.

5) First kiss stories can be fun...tell us yours. Then tell us how you met the love of your life.

My first kiss was Brian Conway in 4th grade at school camp on a tire swing. It’s funny because just yesterday he was added to my facebook as people you might know. That’s funny!

I am not married… so someday I will get back to you on how I met the love of my life…

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Finding Jesus at Kroger

It's a funny thing, today I stopped at Kroger at Maple and Telegraph because I wanted to top my black bean soup with a little guac... and to my wonder and amazement, it's on clearance! Funny to buy your food on clearance (i love those yellow and orange stickers!), but it doesn't expire for 4 more days, plenty of time to gobble it up, and well... feta cheese too! Oh how happy! And there I was praising Jesus for the food I wanted... on sale! It was HALF OFF!!

1 Praise the LORD. [a]
Praise the name of the LORD;
praise him, you servants of the LORD,

2 you who minister in the house of the LORD,
in the courts of the house of our God.

3 Praise the LORD, for the LORD is good;
sing praise to his name, for that is pleasant.

4 For the LORD has chosen Jacob to be his own,
Israel to be his treasured possession.

5 I know that the LORD is great,
that our Lord is greater than all gods.

6 The LORD does whatever pleases him,
in the heavens and on the earth,
in the seas and all their depths.

7 He makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth;
he sends lightning with the rain
and brings out the wind from his storehouses.

8 He struck down the firstborn of Egypt,
the firstborn of men and animals.

9 He sent his signs and wonders into your midst, O Egypt,
against Pharaoh and all his servants.

10 He struck down many nations
and killed mighty kings-

11 Sihon king of the Amorites,
Og king of Bashan
and all the kings of Canaan-

12 and he gave their land as an inheritance,
an inheritance to his people Israel.

13 Your name, O LORD, endures forever,
your renown, O LORD, through all generations.

14 For the LORD will vindicate his people
and have compassion on his servants.

15 The idols of the nations are silver and gold,
made by the hands of men.

16 They have mouths, but cannot speak,
eyes, but they cannot see;

17 they have ears, but cannot hear,
nor is there breath in their mouths.

18 Those who make them will be like them,
and so will all who trust in them.

19 O house of Israel, praise the LORD;
O house of Aaron, praise the LORD;

20 O house of Levi, praise the LORD;
you who fear him, praise the LORD.

21 Praise be to the LORD from Zion,
to him who dwells in Jerusalem.
Praise the LORD.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I never doubt that God is with me.
I never doubt His healing power.
I never doubt that I am completely undeserving of His love.
I never doubt the power of prayer
I never doubt that if I stand on His Word that I am made stronger.
I never doubt that I can completely get in my own way.


The last couple weeks have been a struggle for me. I have never questioned God's presence in my life. I know that He never leaves me, even when I make it easy for Him. I am fighting the urge to fight. Fight what I am not sure. I just know that my baby may be sick and I don't like it, and someone must pay, though I am not sure who, and since I could completely take it out on someone else, I am trying to keep my emotions under control. I am trying not to become consumed, to be balanced as much as I can. I just stay in constant prayer.

I am not sure what I am up against at this time because I "think" her arthritis is coming back, however, we haven't been to the pediatric rheumatologist yet. I really just want to know what I am up against. I remember making all those decisions by myself those years ago, and I am not looking forward to all that again. Even though I am smart (or at least I have common sense), I feel like sometimes I am a little under qualified (maybe I shouldn't have been such a disappointment and I should have went into nursing like my family wanted). This time however, instead of trying to do this on my own, each decision will be put before the Lord with the petition for wisdom for each decision.

Please continue to pray for Phyllis, for the doctors to have wisdom, discernment, and compassion. And for me... peace. And pray for a quick Dr. Appt, I just learned... there isn't one until April... I could potentially lose my mind by then!

James 3:17 17But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

How would you spend your day off if you could do anything you wanted?

I had MLK day off yesterday. Phyllis had school and musical rehearsal so I was free to spend the day any way I liked.

I dropped her off at school, took my dad the paper, picked up some toys that were being donated to Grace, and headed up to Grace Centers of Hope to work in the kitchen to help prepare and serve lunch. What a blessing!! As I began to do the desserts in walked 30 6th graders. I was so blessed that I got to work with 4 beautiful little girls, we prepared the desserts and they told me a little about themselves. It was a great day!

And then it was even better!

As I was cleaning up I looked up and there was Mary Kay and Roger! Oh MY!! I was so excited, I haven't seen them in about 14 years! I used to babysit their beautiful children Rachel & Zack! I was so excited! We caught up the best we could in 15 minutes. It was amazing to me how God brought us together, Roger had just met Pastor Clark last week.

Had lunch with a good friend, then headed back to the Mission, and then home! Off to Fuel I went to see those beautiful children!!

Gal 5:13 You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature ; rather, serve one another in love.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Updates

I owe some updates...

My dad should be out of the hospital tomorrow, pinched nerve. Yikes...

Phyllis's knees are still bothering her (and her ankles were swollen and hurting yesterday), we went to the doctor's office on Friday, only to be told that they really can't tell anything and that we need to go to a specialist... duh!? and the doctor wanted to know why the referral lady didn't just write a referral... Hmmm... good question, I wondered the same thing but whatever. Monday I will call to get an appt scheduled.

Me, I'm a little high-strung. Trusting and KNOWING that God has this all under control. I also know that should we go down the road of JRA again, it will be bumpy, however, God carried me last time, and He hasn't let me out of His grip since.

Thanks for praying, you have no idea how much it means.

Psalm 18:1-3
1 I love you, O LORD, my strength.
2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn [a] of my salvation, my stronghold.
3 I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise,
and I am saved from my enemies.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I love Detroit

I don't know if you know, but around here, Mitch Albom is a writer for our local paper. He was invited to write an article for Sports Illustrated. You can click here to read it. The article is a must read. I even had Phyllis read it while we were in the doctor's office yesterday.

Although I've lived in the 'burbs of Detroit all my life, I've lived close. I complain about the snow, but I love Detroit. I love all it's culture, and I'm not talking about the food.

As a child I went on countless field trips to Greenfield Village, the DIA, Detroit Science Center, the Detroit Zoo. I love the Gem Theatre, especially the summer they had Jazz every Friday. Stacey and I never missed a Friday I don't think. There's Roma Cafe, and we have this gem of an island Belle Isle. Completely under-rated and under utilized. It's beautiful and I always take out of town guests there to get a beautiful view of the city. There are great theaters, the Detroit Opera House, Masonic Temple (they give tours - it is A MUST DO! SO INTERESTING!!), Fisher Theater, and SO MUCH MORE!!!

I remember in second grade, Mrs. McLauglin took me to see Annie. I remember how excited I was, I remember pushing open the big doors thinking the place was so majestic, I can see it even today. I love musicals to this day, I even went to see Grease all by myself and got turned around on Mt. Elliott (one of the few times I've been scared on the streets of Detroit).

This year we went on a mission trip to Highland park, just blocks away from where the movie Gran Torino was shot. I even said "that's highland park" and remembered so many landmarks that were shot there. Our T-Shirts said "I love Detroit, the city of this reputation begins with me". Our city is known for the bad choices of our mayor, our murder rate, and countless other things, you've got to be tough to survive here. However, we are a city that cares about each other, my neighbor even stops and gives care packages to those that she passes on her way to and from work. We don't go far on our mission trips, we stay close to home, helping those we love, because they are family.

I love Detroit, the reputation starts with me.

Bombarding the throne


1. Dad - He's in the hospital, they think he has encephalitis (not sure if I spelled that right - it's the swelling of his brain lining - he had it before about 10 years ago)

2. Safe driving for our Fuel "field trip"

3. Phyllis's knees

4. People on the streets

5. Ann Marie

6. Grace Centers of Hope/Grace Gospel Fellowship

7. Metro/Alive/Fuel

8. Staying focused

9. Selena

10. Wanda

Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I just started making this... Oh man it's so yummy!!

Black Bean Salad

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained well
3 artichoke hearts, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1-2 T chopped green onion
1-2 T chopped fresh parsley
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1 T olive oil
Salt & pepper

Mix well!! So good!!

Nutritional Info for the WHOLE thing:

442 Calories
16g fat
21g Protein
66 carbs

I wish...


I wish there was church today.

I know that a lot of people make excuses why they don't need to go to church. And don't give me that stuff about "being the church", I know all that noise, I just want to sit in a building, hear (and sing along with) some praise and worship, hear a sermon, get a hug or two...

I know that it might seem wierd, but I love a good sermon.
I don't know if its because I have been sitting at the throne for the last week, praying about Phyllis (and her knees), I don't know if it's because I know there will be a praise report (no matter the outcome) from the doctor's appt. maybe it's that today, I just want to be surrounded by people who have the love of Christ, I am not really sure.
I just wish there was church today.
Acts 14:27 On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles

Thursday, January 15, 2009

SHE MADE IT!!!


Phyllis tried out for the musical at her school, Little Shop of Horrors.

Phyllis happens to belong to the OA Club (that’s over-achievers) for you who do not carry the card. The day they found out about what musical they were doing, Miss Phyllis text me to order it for her…lol…

She practiced and practiced. She went to auditions on Monday and Tuesday, they held her late on Tuesday. Wednesday was callbacks! Last night, I have no idea what time it was, she checked the website (I actually think she got up in the middle of the night!) and she was in!! She was very excited.

I’m so proud. She almost didn’t try out because she was afraid of the small cast that she wouldn’t make it. I told her “try out, it’s a good experience, even if you don’t make it, but you will, you’ll be more experienced for next year”.

This proud mama is taking her to the doc tomorrow to get those knees checked out, and then our household will be “little shop of horrer”ing it for the next 2.5 months!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Trusting

Hebrews 4:14-16 14Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens,[a] Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. 16Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

Do you ever think “for His glory” and then when something happens you think “can’t you just use someone else? I’m happy over here doing thisorthat.

That happened to me today. Phyllis’s knees have been bothering her. To the point that I was concerned it might be her Rheumatoid Arthritis coming back. And I began to think about what it was like “back when”. Oh I remember those days like they were yesterday and they seem far away at the same time. Ok, true confessions, I started to worry (UGH! I get so mad at myself when I do that!)

I even sent someone a message “but do you think God could just use us to serve and let someone else go through all this?”. Isn’t that funny? The going gets tough and I just say “Not me”. I didn’t really mean it, well, I kind of meant it, but I really think this is just another opportunity for God to show up and show off. I went to the bathroom and had a good cry. "I TRUST YOU GOD" through tears, Jesus tears.

Jesus tears. When God removes all the yucky and fills you up with Him. When you can’t do anything but surrender, to give it all to Him. To really say “for Your Glory”. I am His, and I know that never ever does He leave me, not before and not now.

I went to my desk, read Psalm 46 and then Heb 4:14-16

I made her a Dr. appt only for her to tell me that she's fine. And then I started to think "did I over-react?" she complained for 4 days... I don't think that I did. I am going to take her just to be sure, she seems to be fine, but it won't hurt to take her to have her knees looked at.

Psalm 46
For the director of music. Of the Sons of Korah. According to Alamoth. A song. [a]
1 God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,

3 though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
Selah

4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.

5 God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.

6 Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
he lifts his voice, the earth melts.

7 The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah

8 Come and see the works of the LORD,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.

9 He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth;
he breaks the bow and shatters the spear,
he burns the shields [b] with fire.

10 "Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."

11 The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah

music


The magic of my MP3 player.

I never understood the magic of an MP3 player, until I had one.

I love that it's compact, I can take a walk, and just easily nestle it into my pocket. It doesn't skip when I run. It's small enough that while I am at work I listen to it, and it just sits in my lap. I download 4 or 5 sermons to listen to while I am... anywhere... I have like 233 songs on it, and it's not even half full... and everytime a song comes on... I say to myself "OH! I LOVE THIS SONG" (duh, I loaded them all!) Because I have such a huge variety of music that I love there is never a radio station that plays it all, it's sweet!

Currently playing... Return to Pooh Corner by Kenny Loggins...

I LOVE THIS SONG!! HA!
Psalm 33:3 Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Good choices

Yesterday I was VERY tired. I had to do this report and pull all these part numbers... lalalalala... but it was not the most exciting thing I've ever done, partnered with the fact that this weekend was the winter retreat, I was tired. Fuel (Jr. High) was last night. I was TIRED and really thristy (I drank 96 oz of water yesterday)! and... hungry when I got home. What was on the stove left over from Phyllis's dinner? Pizza.

Ugh.

So instead... right to the fridge for some string cheese and a couple turkey meatballs. Good choices.

Today I am still tired, drink my water, make good food choices, and even just 20 minutes on the treadmill tonight, I will sleep well.

It's about good choices. Katie spoke on Saturday about a sermon she had heard by Andy Stanley... The best question ever. (Book is ordered)

Is this a wise decision based on...

My past experiences
My current circumstances
and
My future hopes and dreams?

For the average person eating a piece of pizza is not that big of a deal. But for me, that would not be a wise choice. Knowing my past experiences, I have always struggled with eating (too much, wrong choices), I am overweight (current circumstances), and my future hopes and dreams is to be healthy and thin(ner). Isn't it funny that a simple question can make such a big difference.

I know it's silly to be proud of yourself because you didn't eat a piece of pizza, but I really do know it was the wisest choice. Think about the things we can really change in our hearts and our lives.

Proverbs 21:20 In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Change begins in my heart... not my mouth


I could "tell" you how much I want to lose weight. For me, it's not about looking good, though that would be a very good benefit.

For me, it's about being healthy, in mind, body, and spirit.

This year I am running a 5K in May and the very next weekend I want to run a 10K. The first one is for the fight against Breast Cancer the second one is a fundraiser for Grace Centers of Hope.

But I can talk about it all I want. The change can go on and on in my mouth and nothing will ever change. However, when the change happens in my heart, everything can change. Let the change begin inside and transform to the outside. My favorite song is "from the inside out", it's even my ring tone...

In my heart, in my soul,
Lord I give you control
Consume me from the inside out Lord
Let justice and praise become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

I've been trying to eat well, and then we went to camp... ugh... I could have made good choices, but I didn't. But I did walk... a lot! SOmetimes we have to make the change again!

I've made a few changes... no more getting my nails done (time and financial save). I don't have time to work out... I will make the time. Cutting down on the TV, reading more. More water. But more importantly, my heart is changing!

Psalm 51:10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Friday, January 09, 2009

I believe


After long contemplation about what I believe, my answer is very simple.


I believe that Love is the answer.


1 John 4:7-12 7Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son[b] into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for[c] our sins. 11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

When it's hard...


I thought about Sara's post the other day on the way home...

When is it hard to feel the presence of God?

When I'm selfish. When I put "me" before everything and forget who "I" am.

I see God in so many things... in a little things and big things, and if I am going to be completely honest, I see Him in more little things than I see Him in big things. Which is something I had decided that I needed to work on this year.

The only time that it is hard for me to see God is when I can't get out of my own way. When I act like a snit or a brat. I feel the presence of God almost everywhere I go. I hear His voice, and I feel the Holy Spirit almost all the time. I consider myself blessed beyond belief!!

Almost everyday I wonder why God would choose to save me. I wonder why it is that a powerful, wonderful, almighty, ALL mighty God would say "Child I love you". And honestly, I don't understand why people don't look to the heavens and say "whatever You want Lord". Because it seems to me that when I put my own needs first, when I say it's all about me, that's the times I don't feel right, like the Holy Spirit gives me constant indigestion. There are only a few things or maybe a few times when I know it's right to say "for me".

We are about to leave for our Winter Retreat for the weekend, well, we leave this afternoon and we return home Sunday. I can't wait to see the formation of the students' hearts. I can't wait to see God literally move their hearts closer to Him. I can't wait to take sometime for myself for a walk in the woods or some real alone time with God, in the middle of a beautiful place, even in the cold. This time is for them, however, I know that if I open my heart to Him, and all (ALL) His glory... I will be blessed, I know this because I already am.

Psalm 9:1-2
1 I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart;
I will tell of all your wonders.
2 I will be glad and rejoice in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

He is!

One of my very favorite things in the world is to hear Pastor Clark say who Jesus is. Pastor Clark is an old-school preacher, and when he starts telling you who Jesus is, you can't help but get all "happy all by yourself" (Pastor Clark always says that!).

One day over the break I was listening to a
Men of Grace CD (One Child) and there it was! I just couldn't help but get excited about who God is!

Say it with me! Because HE IS!!

Advocate (1 John 2:1)
Almighty (Rev. 1:8; Mt. 28:18)
Alpha and Omega (Rev. 1:8; 22:13)
Amen (Rev. 3:14)
Apostle of our Profession (Heb. 3:1)
Atoning Sacrifice for our Sins (1 John 2:2)
Author of Life (Acts 3:15)
Author and Perfecter of our Faith (Heb. 12:2)
Author of Salvation (Heb. 2:10)
Beginning and End (Rev. 22:13)
Blessed and only Ruler (1 Tim. 6:15)
Bread of God (John 6:33)
Bread of Life (John 6:35; 6:48)
Bridegroom (Mt. 9:15)
Capstone (Acts 4:11; 1 Pet. 2:7)
Chief Cornerstone (Eph. 2:20)
Chief Shepherd (1 Pet. 5:4)
Christ (1 John 2:22)
Creator (John 1:3)
Deliverer (Rom. 11:26)
Eternal Life (1 John 1:2; 5:20)
Faithful and True (Rev. 19:11)
Faithful Witness (Rev. 1:5)
Faithful and True Witness (Rev. 3:14)
First and Last (Rev. 1:17; 2:8; 22:13)
Firstborn From the Dead (Rev. 1:5)
Firstborn over all creation (Col. 1:15)
Gate (John 10:9)
God (John 1:1; 20:28; Heb. 1:8; Rom. 9:5; 2 Pet. 1:1;1 John 5:20; etc.)
Good Shepherd (John 10:11,14)
Great Shepherd (Heb. 13:20)
Great High Priest (Heb. 4:14)
Head of the Church (Eph. 1:22; 4:15; 5:23)
Heir of all things (Heb. 1:2)
High Priest (Heb. 2:17)
Holy and True (Rev. 3:7)
Holy One (Acts 3:14)
Hope (1 Tim. 1:1)
Hope of Glory (Col. 1:27)
Horn of Salvation (Luke 1:69)
I Am (John 8:58)
Image of God (2 Cor. 4:4)
Immanuel (Mt. 1:23)
Judge of the living and the dead (Acts 10:42)
King Eternal (1 Tim. 1:17)
King of Israel (John 1:49)
King of the Jews (Mt. 27:11)
King of kings (1 Tim 6:15; Rev. 19:16)
King of the Ages (Rev. 15:3)
Lamb (Rev. 13:8)
Lamb of God (John 1:29)
Lamb Without Blemish (1 Pet. 1:19)
Last Adam (1 Cor. 15:45)
Life (John 14:6; Col. 3:4)
Light of the World (John 8:12)
Lion of the Tribe of Judah (Rev. 5:5)
Living One (Rev. 1:18)
Living Stone (1 Pet. 2:4)
Lord (2 Pet. 2:20)
Lord of All (Acts 10:36)
Lord of Glory (1 Cor. 2:8)
Lord of lords (Rev. 19:16)
Man from Heaven (1 Cor. 15:48)
Mediator of the New Covenant (Heb. 9:15)
Mighty God (Isa. 9:6)
Morning Star (Rev. 22:16)
Offspring of David (Rev. 22:16)
Only Begotten Son of God (John 1:18; 1 John 4:9)
Our Great God and Savior (Titus 2:13)
Our Holiness (1 Cor. 1:30)
Our Husband (2 Cor. 11:2)
Our Protection (2 Thess. 3:3)
Our Redemption (1 Cor. 1:30)
Our Righteousness (1 Cor. 1:30)
Our Sacrificed Passover Lamb (1 Cor. 5:7)
Power of God (1 Cor. 1:24)
Precious Cornerstone (1 Pet. 2:6)
Prophet (Acts 3:22)
Rabbi (Mt. 26:25)
Resurrection and Life (John 11:25)
Righteous Branch (Jer. 23:5)
Righteous One (Acts 7:52; 1 John 2:1)
Rock (1 Cor. 10:4)
Root of David (Rev. 5:5; 22:16)
Ruler of God’s Creation (Rev. 3:14)
Ruler of the Kings of the Earth (Rev. 1:5)
Savior (Eph. 5:23; Titus 1:4; 3:6; 2 Pet. 2:20)
Son of David (Lk. 18:39)
Son of God (John 1:49; Heb. 4:14)
Son of Man (Mt. 8:20)
Son of the Most High God (Lk. 1:32)
Source of Eternal Salvation for all who obey him (Heb. 5:9)
The One Mediator (1 Tim. 2:5)
The Stone the builders rejected (Acts 4:11)
True Bread (John 6:32)
True Light (John 1:9)
True Vine (John 15:1)
Truth (John 1:14; 14:6)
Way (John 14:6)
Wisdom of God (1 Cor. 1:24)
Word (John 1:1)
Word of God (Rev. 19:13)

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

2009


Some years start out feeling like there is going to be a lot of change, and some start out with the feeling that there will be a small amount of change. My heart is in constant healing and growth, so I really don't count that.

This year, I feel like there is going to be a lot of change, not sure what that means. I just feel like God is saying to me "trust Me". And so I feel like I have to be patient. I am the kind of person that doesn't like to ease into anything. Sometimes I jump with both feet into the pool before checking to see if there was water in the pool! Ugh. I like to know what is going to happen and in some way "control" it. HA! Like that really happens?!

So, I have to be patient, take my time. Go where God leads and to enjoy each step, even the bumpy ones. And to be used where ever I am even in the waiting times.

I have to tell you, I walked into church on Sunday getting ready for Alive, I typically have a purpose, I don't stop much except for a quick "hello" and maybe a hug, I have a lot to do, however Sunday one of the girls called me over to talk to me. And part of me thought "it's probably nothing really" but the important part of me thought "she needs to talk to me" and I was right, but not in the way that you think. It wasn't about drama, it wasn't about an issue, it was to tell me that I mean a lot to her and I don't remember what exactly said except that I used to call her "my little zealot". It made me smile. She has the most beautiful spirit. It was a simple message from God to say "see, you do make a difference, even in small ways".

That's what I mean, being used by God in small ways that somehow one day will make a difference in His Kingdom, for His glory. I don't think that He will ever call me for overseas missions (and I am TOTALLY OK with that, I always say if He calls me overseas, I might hang up). I think that there is so much that has to be done here, in the name of love, maybe a silly nickname, maybe a hug, a smile, a warm meal, not really sure. I just want to be used! I want to be used by God!! I want to be open to being used by God EVERYDAY! Not just when I feel like serving, I want to serve EVERYDAY! And when I feel like I don't want to serve, I want to remember that I will serve more those days, that God will hold me closer to Him those days so that my heart is inline with His. When it's easy, when it's hard. when things are going well, and mostly when they are not. To be in love with God everyday, not just to love Him but to be IN love with Him.

Psalm 7:9
9 O righteous God,
who searches minds and hearts,
bring to an end the violence of the wicked
and make the righteous secure.


Playing on my Mp3:
I'm in Love with You - Desperation Band
With all my heart with all I am
All I have I give to You
Your love has won my heart
And Your joy makes me draw near
So we dance and we sing
And we give our hearts again
And we shout to You
And we lift our voices now
I'm in love with You
I'm in love with You
I'm in love with You
I'm in love with You

Monday, January 05, 2009

Love is enough


Proverbs 1:8 Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching.

I often wonder, besides love what do I have to give? I do pretty well financially, certainly not rolling in the dough, but our needs are more than met. I have a house that has become our home, but a mansion it's not. But I have love.

It's because of love that I can forgive
It's because of love that I can show mercy
It's because of love I pray
It's because of love I can extend grace
It's because of love that I can encourage
It's because of love that I have joy
It's because of love...

My mom has been dead for along time, but she taught me love. She gave up her own life for mine. It's amazing the thing that you can learn just from love.

Because, I don't care what people say, love is enough

John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

Live and love Abundantly


I have had this feeling for the last couple days. This message that I think God wants me to get.
I am going to be reading the bible this year, the whole thing. I pray that God speaks to me so loudly and quietly at the same time!
God has this grand abdundance for us. Not so much in riches but in peace, love, and joy. He tells us not to worry, He even gives us specific instructions on what to do, and what not to do. Not because He wants to be bossy (but He could He's God afterall) but because He has this life for us of abdundance.
Live and love abundantly. That's what I have for you, my child. I was in church yesterday and was just reminded of it. The pastor was talking about this beautiful young woman who is on the streets, and how he didn't want her to die. Really, if she's saved, it's not about dying, it's about really living. It's about having that feeling of love, and carrying it everywhere you go. About being used for the glory (GLORY!!) of God. It's about the riches that you can't get from loving money, it's about knowing that you don't have anything to give except love.
God wants us to live and love abundantly.
1 Tim 1:14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus
Here is the plan I am going to be doing

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Happy Birthday Phyllis!

Today is Phyllis's birthday party! (Monday is her real birthday)

Things I love about Phyllis

1. Her laugh
2. Her smile
3. she loves Jesus
4. She makes me want to be a better mom because she's such a great kid
5. She is beautiful!
6. She is artistic and totally talented
7. She loves people
8. She wants to make the world a better place, starting with her
9. I love to watch her drink tea
10. I love her old soul

Psalm 112:2 His children will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed

In the words of the great Stevie Wonder…
You are the sunshine of my life
Thats why Ill always be around,
You are the apple of my eye,
Forever youll stay in my heart


And in her honor... the greatest song ever written!!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Letting Go


Started a new book today, the Sacred Romance.

Had a super yummy mushroom and spinach pizza for lunch while watching PS I Love you

Shopping at Meijer with Phyllis

My dad made me a YUMMY dinner which was made up of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, vegetables, and we had leftover apple crisp that was as yummy today as it was yesterday with butter pecan ice cream.

Finishing the day watching one of my very favorite movies 'Invincible' wrapped up in a warm blanket.

It's up to me whether my birthday is remembered with happy memories or sad ones. And sometimes I can get wrapped up in what I don't have instead of the blessings around me, let's face it, sometimes I can be a real jerk because I am blessed beyond measure.

All the bad stuff it doesn't matter, the good stuff is what I need to count. There is one thing I really love about my birthday, that is that it starts the new year. It is full of endless possibilities and rarely finishes like I expect and the journey is beautiful and sometimes rocky, but always to the Glory of God. It reminds me of one of the most known scriptures when someone is saved or baptized... 2 Cor 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”

Today, is a blessing from God, a new day, full of endless love.

I am blessed.

And where is my PONY!?
Romans 15:29 I know that when I come to you, I will come in the full measure of the blessing of Christ.

Happy New Year

Last year we went on a winter retreat for New Years, this year was a little (a lot more laid back), Alive didn't have a party because our college age ministry had a party, so they were all busy (A lot of them are youth staff too) so I just planned on having some people over.

There was 7 of us. Gibby (Phyllis's boyfriend), Muscle Mike, Jeremiah, Katie, Cody, and ME! I made Chicken & Dumplings, mashed tators, green beans, broccolli, crescent rolls, and Phyllis made some off the hook Apple Crisp that was my gram's recipe (I think that may become a tradition!). We ate, played apples to apples and laughed so hard that I cried and couldn't breathe!!

It was a great start to the New Year, filled with love and laughter!
Psalm 90:14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.