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, August 31, 2011

One day I will!

I don't know what it is about New York City but for some reason, I just can't seem to get there!  I've wanted to go there for a long time.  I think of Lindsay and EJ when I say this.... I LONG to go there LOL!  I'm funny!

I can't believe last April, I had our trip planned... BLAH!  Phyllis and her foot! I actually contiplated going this Labor Day with some friends!  Money and now a stress facture! what is it about the feets in my family?! 

I have a lot of places I'd like to go!  But New York is at the TIP TOP of the list!  So I think that will be my goal after I complete my marathon in April 2012 (yes, I really am proceeding like I am going to complete it!)

I can't wait to run in central park, that's right RUN because, after all, I am officially official a runner! I have a runner's type of injury! 

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

STRESS!!!

Well, the verdict is in, confirmed with X-rays, I have a stress fracture!  Proof that I am stressed!  People didn’t really believe me!

I was supposed to run the Detroit Marathon in October with some friends to raise money for 4-more that brings clean drinking water to Rwandan Orphans.  My plan is still to do that, albeit a little delayed.  My new goal is the Martian Marathon in April 2012.  It means I will be by myself instead of with friends but it means there still is a plan.  So please mark your calendar to come cheer me on April 14, 2012! 

My goal is still to raise $2620, $100 for every mile that I run/complete.  That means that if you put like eleven cents in a jar from now till the say I run you will help me to not only meet my goal, but EXCEED it! (.11*254 = $27.94)!!!

I plan on supporting my friends as they run the marathon and loving on them!  With or without a boot!  Hopefully without! 

So that’s it!  I will do a little better in managing my training (because that is what probably caused it – too much too soon the doc said)!

AND!!!!  
PRAISE THE LORD! When this is all over, I can still wear heels!  Straight from the Dr.’s mouth!  WOOO HOOOOOOO!!

and more good news... it means I'm really a runner!

Romans 16:20 The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.

FYI - I do own those shoes, but those are not my feet! They are SASSY!

I'm a little nervous...

So I go to the doctor (podiatrist) about my foot today...

Maybe it doesn't seem like a big deal, but it seems like a big deal to me.

1. what if she tells me no more running? well... that could be good AND bad
2. Worse yet, what if she says no more heels? Oh, I don't know if I could live with that. And, by the way, I'm not kidding!  I'm not kidding at all!!!!!

Broken, torn ligament, tendon ripped to shreds, who knows, maybe i was running so fast that my bones couldn't keep up LOL! I do know that I hope it's something (so it can be fixed) but nothing totally horrible.

I'm praying. Hope you are too. No boot either, they are so not attractive. And I am sure I will need an MRI, need to get in QUICKLY!

Phil 4:6-7 6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.



Monday, August 29, 2011

New Morning, New Mercy


I often wish I was more like Mary. I wish that I sat at the feet of Jesus listening and soaking Him in like Mary. But instead I feel like Martha on speed. Sometimes I resent being Martha but I don’t know any other way to be because I know that I can’t always handle being a Martha.
I look around and I see so many things that need to be done, and who is going to do them, if not now, then when, and if not me, then who?
I look at my garage that needs to be painted, my basement that needs to be de-cluttered, I look at the ‘staging’ area of my dining room for whatever is going on (currently it’s school supplies for Africa, fundraiser food for the El Salvador Trip, and the weekly meal taking for Alive leaders). There is so much going on that I never feel like that room is ever right. We obviously don’t eat at the dining room table. Heck, until this week, it’s been whatever we whip up for dinner. I think about when will it all get done. And lots not even start with friends who need Love, teenagers who are hurting, friends who need prayer, people who need things done, and let’s not even begin to think about the orphans all over the world…
I look at my calendar and it looks like someone threw up the alphabet on it. I wonder, how can it all be done? But then I get tired, and I am hurting myself with so much pain all around me. I often don’t always think correctly or have the wrong perception about things. I see things that aren’t really as they seem. Hence how I could possibly think that someone doesn’t care about me but cares more about the money I could raise. That’s dumb. So dumb. I have this nutty thing that I often believe that people only love me for what I do, not who I am.
Here’s the thing, I like being Martha. I like that God uses me to do things for Him, the part that I really struggle with is that I think that nobody notices me because I feel like they don’t really like me unless I do something for them. I could go on and on about the things that bug me, but I won’t because they don’t really matter to anyone but me. And the truth is, I like being a Martha, I just wish that others would join me in the kitchen or wherever I am. I know that Jesus meets me in the kitchen. I need to find the balance of Martha and resting. As a ‘Martha’ I am task oriented, a box checker, and in many ways I do like being a box checker, I love helping others, but I need to find my value in Jesus, and no one else, because when I do, I listen better, my perception is better. I gotta read my bible more… and live it… ugh :/ I'm thankful for His forgiveness. A new day, a new mercy, a new beginning.
Lam 3:22-23
22 The faithful love of the Lord never ends![a]
His mercies never cease.
23 Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.

Luke 10:38-42 38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” 41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Marathon Update


I hurt my foot months ago. I have no idea what happened or what I did.  Probably dropped something on it while cooking and just kept on going.  Somedays it hurts, and somedays it REALLY hurts, and I can’t really remember a day when it didn’t hurt.  It’s not broken.  That’s good news.

However, I was supposed to run a marathon on October.  Not the half, but the full, 26.2 miles. To raise money for wells in Rwanda.  I was excited!  I had to come to the reality that running/walking a foot that hurts all the time is probably not a good idea.  And I can tell you, with tears in my eyes, that I am so sad at all the people I am going to disappoint.  The people I signed up with, the orphans…  the list is long!

One person in my family asked me ‘what happened to your foot?’ when I started to tell them, the roofer showed up and they never asked again.  I think one friend was more concerned that I wouldn’t be able to raise money than what was wrong with me.  Maybe nobody cares, which I think is totally possible, people have their own worries. I spent 5 hours pretty much on my feet the other day for work, and the next day my foot was pretty swollen and I tried to keep it up as much as possible. I wonder if I couldn’t just stand on my feet how could I possible run/walk 26.2 miles?  I try not to let it slow me down, just developed a gait to work around my new found handicap. 

I am hoping that in April I’ll be able to do the Full at the Martian Marathon.  It gives me a little bit longer to train, work on my core and my mental stance, though I feel like I already paid for the Detroit Marathon, should I just try?  If I fail, and they have to cut my foot off, or more likely end up on crutches, I guess people will know I wasn’t kidding when I said my foot was hurting.

Oh I don’t know what to do…  I am not one to give up…

Phil 3:13-14 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Planning the week ahead!

I’ve not been real good at preparing meals for us the last couple weeks, though, ironically, I’ve made sure others have eaten well.  I haven't been reading my bible like I should, though, thankfully, I've stayed connected to God in prayer and music.  I really hurt my foot too! It has been crazy around our house, I’m choosing to settle down and settle in a little more this week. 

I know that I could constantly beat myself up, but I am not going to, it’s just a matter of starting fresh!  So I’m back to planning meals!

Saturday  
Lunch - Picnic in Canada with Rosie & Melissa (sandwiches, pasta salad)
Dinner – Homemade pizza and salad

Sunday
            Lunch – Taco meat & rice Burritos (leftover roundup)
            Dinner – Chicken Spaghetti (Alive leaders are getting this too) & homemade bread

Monday Shepherd’s Pie (Making ahead Sunday)

Tuesday – Chicken & spinach (and probably broccoli) pasta


Thursday – Leftovers

Friday – Chicken Pot Pie or chicken & dumplin's (this would be a good day to eat at our house!)

Matthew 6:25-34 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 than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look 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? 27Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[a]?
   28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If 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—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Book Review: The Art of Racing in the Rain

Because a good friend recommended this book to me, I read it. Not having ever had this friend recommend a book to me, there was no guarantee that I would like this book, though, I’ve never been disappointed by anything this friend recommends, especially wine. Which is funny because I don’t drink that often, but I do really enjoy a glass or two of wine with a great meal. And I thought ‘this book is about racing in the rain’ and it is told from a dog’s point of view, which both of those seem kind of non-appealing to me.
1. What am I? not a racing fan for sure, watching someone go around a track in a very loud car, surrounded by loud cars is not at all appealing.
2. I don’t even really like dogs.

SO this could have gone wrong, very wrong, though I did tell my friend that if I hated it, I would send him a bill for $10 for the cost of my e-book. So truly, what did I have to lose? And he said it was a quick read.

I LOVED THIS BOOK! I mean, I really loved it. I stayed up late, twice, because I couldn’t put it down. When I finally put it down, I wanted to pick it back up, but the book was finished.

A lot happens in this 250 page e-book. I laughed out loud, gained perspective, and cried, and smiled.

Even though this book is fiction, there actually is some wisdom gained in this. I can’t go into too many details about the book, because I’ll give it away.

1. Things aren’t always what they seem. When you read about the chicken nuggets, you will understand what I mean.
2. Don’t give up early on, races aren’t won in the first corner. So don’t give up if things aren’t going how you think they should or you aren’t winning.
3. Your car goes where your eyes go. This was kind of cool for me because sometimes we have to keep our eyes on where we need to be, not necessarily where we think we are going.

All I can say, is read this book. I won’t give you your money back if you hate it, but I bet you won’t. I might even read it again.

Also... another reason why I love my Nook... I had the book within 10 minutes of ordering it (from my bed) and could read right aways!

Here are the links to Amazon and Barnes and Noble.  Remember, if you're friends with me, I can lend you the book if you have a Nook!

And once again, my friend did not disappoint.  Gracias Amigo!

http://www.amazon.com/Art-Racing-Rain-Novel/dp/0061537969/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1314363542&sr=8-1

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/art-of-racing-in-the-rain-garth-stein/1100241197?ean=9780061738098&itm=1&usri=the%2bart%2bof%2bracing%2bin%2bthe%2brain

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

On my mind Wednesday!

I have a lot on my mind these days.  I can't even begin to tell you all of it.  A lot of feelings that I don't even know what to do with, it seems 100s of people that I feel the need to love and take care of, and at the same time I feel like I have no one to listen to me.  how is that?  because I know I have so many people who love me.  I just don't want to be a downer but sometimes I just need a release.


Also, my foot hurts SOOOO bad.  The doc said it is not broken, but Saturday I spent the greater part of the day not in supportive shoes, but it didn't seem that bad.  I ran/walked on Sunday, and it was a little hurting but Monday I walked only 2 miles and it hurt almost the whole time I was walking... and today I spent at least 4-5 hours on it (in heels) and then barefoot, and so it is hurting a lot!  I don't want to be a quitter, but I really do wonder on earth I will run even just 1/2 a marathon let alone the whole thing, I feel like I couldn't run a 5K.  Ugh.  what to do?


We had a cool presentation thing at work today and I got to go to a Technical Design Review and I am not technical at all, but I loved it.  It reminded me why I love my job!  what a blessing.


Today we said goodbye to a beautiful young girl at a memorial service, but we don't ever really have to say goodbye because we love her, and she loved Jesus, so life is just a vapor and we will see her soon.  Thankful I got to be a part of it, in a such a small way.




If you didn't know, I got my wireless working!  Woo hoo! I was proud of myself.


This was my prayer today, it should be my prayer everyday:  Praying to see people like God sees them. So I can pray for them and LOVE them!!


I am also reading a new book called 'The art of racing in the rain' and I will be doing a book review of it, just because I love it!  WOW!  I would recommend it time 10,000,000.


I'd also like to share a video with you of a beautiful young woman, watch it.  It is not only inspiring it brings God's love to me, to remind me that love is worth living! http://vimeo.com/27896952


The last of my cupcakes are cooking, and so I shall be off for tonight.  I am thankful to love so many and be loved by so many, I am thankful for God in a million different ways, for a million different reasons.


Today's verse on biblegateway.com
Psalm 116:1-2 “I love the LORD, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live.” 


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

I have life!


I feel like I am walking in the valley of death.  In the last month or so I’ve known 4 people in the last month who have died.  People I’ve known and loved and truly cared about.  I’m tired of death.

I was exposed to death at a very young age, my mom died when I was 16 months old, I can remember going to a funeral at the age of 6.  I can remember a friend of mine went to her first funeral when she was in her 30s, I remember being almost shocked by that.  I don’t even cry sometimes, especially if they know Jesus.  I only cried once at my gramma’s funeral and it was because I was hugging two beautiful young girls (Phyllis & Erica) who were crying, she was sick and she knew Jesus, sounds weird but there wasn’t much to cry about.

I’m saddened by death, but I know that death from earth is necessary.  I know this.  But death of your soul is not. There is life, there is hope, there is joy, there is Jesus.  There is true life, life everlasting.  When I am tired, and weak, when I am sad, I think of Jesus.

When I went to Christ the Good Shepherd we said Psalm 23 at every mass.  I am thankful.  I can say it without really thinking about it, etched into my heart.
 1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
 3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
   for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
   through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
   for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
   they comfort me.

 5 You prepare a table before me
   in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
   my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
   all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD
   forever.

I don’t know what will come of the next couple days, memorial services, funerals.  But I do know that He guides me, loves me, and never leaves me. It may feel like I walk in the valley of death, but I have faith that I walk in true life.

Friday, August 19, 2011

I loveyouI loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.

Two of 'my kids' have died in the last three weeks.  My uncle is sick.  my friend's dad has cancer. It has made me want to say I loveyou to every person that I see or talk to.  And I already say it a lot.  It makes me want to tell people about the beauty the possess. It makes me never want to hold back a compliment, a kind word, or a hug.

So I won't.

If you get a card that just says I loveyou, it's because I do.  And I refuse to hold back in any form, any longer.

I loveyou. I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.I loveyou.

Life it too short not to say I loveyou.


James 4:14  Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 

A new school year!

I love being Youth Staff! I love it! It’s one of those things that scares you almost to death, teenagers are completely scary but they are completely awesome. The best part of loving a teenager? I can’t pick just one thing, that’s how awesome they are!


Youth Ministry is brutal. It’s exhausting and heartbreaking, and probably the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done in my life or will ever do, for that matter (other than being a mom to my own daughter). Teenagers are just like adults who haven’t learned to hide their mess, so a lot of times it is on the surface and easier to deal with, and when it’s not, well, you just keep loving! This generation has my heart, it is amazing to see them change the world around them, to see God do such an awesome work in their lives.

People have told me that I am nuts for loving teenagers. They’ve actually said to me that it is not my responsibility to carry the burdens of those teenagers, that I am not their mother. Well, this is where I would have to disagree, we are called to carry the burdens of others.

Gal 6:2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

It’s not easy, it seems I already have enough to worry about, right? Well, here’s the thing, It says in

Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest

How thankful I am that I can give my burdens to Jesus and He will take them ALL! And then I can carry someone else’s, and then put those at the feet of Jesus. And then keep going.

I love prayer. I love that I can pray for others, and I really love that I can pray and God answers their prayers.

It’s time for a new school year, as always, my role as a leader changes, as I discover my gifts and how to best use them, God uses me! At the beginning of each year, I get excited, I get excited about what God is going to do, lives that are going to be changed!!! I also know how hard it is to be a leader, to keep going, it’s exciting to see lives changed but it’s exhausting to keep going with everything else we have in our lives, and it’s heartbreaking to see students make bad choices, but we keep loving them, NO MATTER WHAT because Jesus loves us NO MATTER WHAT!

So as this school year starts, I am asking that you pray for students, that you pray that their lives will be changed by Jesus, that you pray for our leaders to be leaders of integrity, that God will continue to draw them close, that they will be under his wings and grow strength in Him, that they will see the students who are alone, that they will grow to search the hearts of our students, to carry their burdens, that the students and the leaders will be surrounded by those who are encouraging and loving. That satan’s plans be bound and God’s plans be loosened all over Downriver. May as leaders we love and be loved.

Youth Ministry, it’s the hardest job you’ll ever love!

Acts 2:46-47 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.



Thursday, August 18, 2011

EVERY opportunity

I don’t make the most of every opportunity. I don’t. A lot of people will say that I love more/bigger than most. But I don’t make the most of EVERY opportunity set before me. And that makes me sick to my stomach.


I don’t carry granola bars in my purse for people who are homeless.

I don’t always make a meal for people who need it. Making the meal part isn’t hard, it’s actually getting it to them that is difficult. And why can’t I be brave and ask someone to partner with me??

I don’t always call or send cards.

I don’t buy flowers for people who love them.

I don’t listen as well as I should.

I don’t always make/drop off banana bread to my neighbor that I know loves it.

I don’t always remember to buy birthday presents.

I don’t invite people to the DIA and the zoo like I should (I have passes)

I don’t support as many causes for Christ as I could.

I don’t always forgive.

I am not slow to speak and slow to anger and quick to listen.

When I just don’t love because I’m hurting.

I don’t… I could go over so many times in my head when I don’t or haven’t.

Go ahead and tell me that’s normal. Well, please don’t. I don’t want to be normal. I want when you look at me that you say “she’s not normal” sure, I hurt just like everyone else, I get sad, and mad, and frustrated, but I want to look different. I want my first reaction to always be to love. Sometimes that means that I love in quiet and prayer. I want the world to look at me and know there is something different. I don’t want to be weird or a nerd or whatever. I want to just be Love.

I want to make the most of every opportunity set before me to love. I don’t want one minute to pass by that I forget to live Phil 2:1-4


1 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

I want to live a life like Jesus, but if I fall short which I will, I want to live a life like Paul. One fully surrendered to Christ. To know what it is to want, but to know what no matter what I want that nothing is greater than wanting to know and live for Christ and see others come to know Him too. To live a life that produces the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23).


love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control


That when people need a safe place to be loved, that it is my home that they come to, that it is my arms that they find love when they need comforted because my life looks so much like Jesus, I get lost.

Do I realize that people will think I’m nuts when they read this, good. I want to look different. And I will pray that you look different too.  And if you are reading this, and I've let you down, I'm sorry.

Col 4:2-6


2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Making my mark

I’ve been struggling with a lot of things lately. Striving for ‘something more’ and feeling like it might be just around the corner, time is like a vapor, and our short years are filled with long days. And it’s no secret that I want to be married. I’ve always wanted to be married. How does someone who wants to be married so much find herself single? Well, she won’t settle. That’s right, I won’t settle for anything less than God’s best for me. What is God’s best look like for me? I have no idea. None. Is he tall? Short? What does he do for a living? I have no idea. This I do know… he will be a man who lives his life for God, with God, in full submission to God.


I’ve been struggling with all this because, after all, I want it… NOW. But being ‘just around the corner’ seems a long way away, like the last corner when you’ve run 13 miles. Even if it’s just 8 steps away, it almost seems like an eternity. 8 steps = eternity? Run 13 miles, you might begin understand. I feel like I should just be able to go find that perfect person for me. However, I KNOW that I am not smart enough to really figure out who that is. I have faith, that God has a plan, and it’s way better than mine. He’s is wiser than me.

Hebrews 11:1 (NLT) Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.


Hebrews 11:1 (NKJV) Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Evidence = proof

Assurance = full confidence

Here we go. Faith. Do I really trust God? I can see all the things He has done in my life (hind sight) but do I have faith that He will continue to do what He said He would? Do I trust Him? Can I say (in my actions) that His way is better than mine? Do I live out His commandments? DO I love the Lord my God with all my heart, with all my soul, with all my spirit? Do I do the things (in His Word) to prove that? Placing others ahead of myself?

What is the evidence? When people look at my life, what do they see? It might scare me to get the answer.

A friend of mine gave me some great advice yesterday. He said that I’ve been to school, I’ve learned the Word, I’ve got the tools (kind of like college) and now it’s time to go use those tools, to live my life with purpose (the purpose to bring Glory to Him and to live out the greatest commandment), not sure how that will look, or if it will be on my own or married, but never by myself. God will set each step before me, in good and bad. In the sunshinie days and in the days that are shadowed with death, but He will never leave me. I’ll take my tools (bible) and keep going, keep living as He intends. Even when it’s hard. His way. I will trust Him in all the aspects of my life. As it is said “if Jesus isn’t Lord over all of your life, He isn’t Lord in any of it”.

I’m not giving up. I’ll make a heart shaped mark on the world. His way is best. When I can’t see what’s ahead, I’ll just keep walking in the steps set before me, under His wings.

2 Cor 7:1 (NLT) Because we have these promises, dear friends, let us cleanse ourselves from everything that can defile our body or spirit. And let us work toward complete holiness because we fear God.


Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Sorry if this seems a little choppy, I'm working through ' stuff '

Monday, August 15, 2011

Zumba & the gym...

I went to Zumba today.  I seriously forgot how much I love love love it.  Can't wait to go back next week!  I actually am considering going back to Anytime Fitness in Flat Rock because it's such a great gym, need to weigh out (get it) the distance!

Ran 4.63 miles yesterday, thought I was running 4 so that extra was great!  I already have next Sunday's 6-something run plotted out.  To say I can't wait would be lying, but I'm looking forward to completing it.

My friend Susie, well, she was a trainer last year, she is always posting great stuff, she posted this the other day:


What do I fear?
I fear stagnation and lack of progress.
I fear never reaching my potential and being average.
I fear being forgotten…The past…Yesterday’s news.
I fear giving up and being passed by, going softly into that good night.
I fear settling, giving in to the “that’s just the way it is” mindset.
I fear not feeling these fears anymore and just floating along.
These fears feed me, they nourish my drive.
I love my fear
Sean Nelson

I super loved this, so now it's on my cupboard at home.  Trying to stay motivated, thankful, I found the release I was looking for!

Yes, I do realize I'm fat and the shape I am is a circle, so I'm working on it!

Be inspired!  Be inspiring!





Celebrating life & love!

Sloppy Joes (yes with hot dog buns - so much easier to eat), Pasta salad, chips!

hangin' out


Bri & KOG

Melissa, Rosie, Chasko, & Eden

Chasko, Bri, Melissa, Rosie

Torres Family with Bri

Isaac, Bri, Emily, Tara

Tara, Bri, Tommy

Saturday Fun!


Saturday with the muffins!  See post here
they picked out all the strawberries and blueberries

Levi chowing down!

He is upside down!

Judah was blowing on his arm... I have no idea why!

Playing with Aunt Kathy!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Release

Not sure how much sense any of this is going to make... but I need to write...


There are times when I feel like I just might explode.  God gave us an amazing fight or flight reflex but that’s not always realistic.  The best choice is not always to punch someone or run.  And my other option is to cry.  Not always a good option either.

Knowing that I feel this way (all bottled up) makes me nervous.  Because I feel like a champagne bottle ready to blow it’s cork. There were a lot of different ways in the past I would blow off steam, or find a release.  None of which is really all that great of an option now. 

And for me knowing that something great may be just around the corner, makes me always remember not to blow it.  Stay on track.  Pastor J once gave a sermon ‘success=doing the right things/long periods of time’.  Well sometimes when it seems like you’ve been doing the right things long enough, you just want to maybe not do the right things, it doesn’t seem to be getting you anywhere.  Just wait. 

I’m glad that I know the word of God, that it is etched in my heart. When things get tough or I can’t seem to see the light, I hear The Truth and I can keep going.  I also am thankful for things that I really do love to do, like running. It’s a healthy release. 

It is important to recognize how we feel. It is important to know how to deal with how we feel.  And most importantly, when things get crazy, and we don’t know what to do…  turn to God. 

Healthy Release.

This could also mean that I may be running forever the way I feel right now.

Romans 12:9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

P.S.  I’m a mess

Saturday, August 13, 2011

muffins

Today I took two of my favorite muffins for a little while (I'll have to wait to post the pics because the cord is at work :/).  Their mommy and daddy probably think I did it to help them, ok, I did, but truly it was my pleasure.

You see, God does some pretty crazy things in our hearts.  I mean, just by rescuing me from my own personal hell that I lived every day would have been enough, and besides that, I have an amazing eternity, and because of all that, I met these two incredible people that I get to live a life of love and friendship with.  AND THEN as if that wasn't enough, God told them they had to go pick up their two children in Africa (and you thought labor was difficult) and from the moment I knew of the plan, I prayed and prayed and prayed and prayed. I prayed for these little boys and their mommies in Africa and their mommy and daddy here, and with every moment that my heart was connected to God praying for them, it grew more in love with them.

The moment I saw their cute faces, their sweet feet, oh, I was hooked.

And then when I got to hold them.  And hug them.  and smooch on them.  I can't even help it, sometimes I'm just holding them and I can't help but give them a smooch.  And maybe some people might think I shouldn't hold them so much or pick them up whenever they ask but I don't care, I'm their Auntie, the world will tell them a bunch of things, I will love them.  In holding, and smooches, in ice cream and mac&cheese.  In blueberries and waffles, in hugs and splashes in the pool.

I find it hard to express how much I love them, but they know.

I can't imagine my life without them. <3

what a day!

Yesterday was so different than Thursday.  Could have been the hair but it was probably Jesus :)

After a day at work that flew by...  I went for a ride in the Fiskar Karma...  DUDE! that car is sweet and my wanter was turned up full blast because I WANT ONE!

Phyllis got off work and of course we needed to go to dinner so I made a call and Roma's was not that busy so we headed up.  Just sitting across the table from here, I thought "I'm the luckiest person in the world" and I had one of those moments when you turn around and see the grace of God played out in your life.  We lead busy lives, but there really is no one I'd like to spend more time with than her.  Then we drove to Hamtown to pick up my coolers that were borrowed and headed home.

Nothing exciting, a load of laundry, two giant things of mac and cheese for some people that I love.  Bed.  Blessed.

Funny how the verse I thought of yesterday and the verse today are the same, but my heart hears them differently.

Psalm 118:24 This is the day the Lord has made.We will rejoice and be glad in it

Thursday, August 11, 2011

He is!

I’ve been blessed in my life to have seen some incredible worship leaders.  This year on the last day of War Week, Marcus Cole lead worship, and I must say that every minute of worship during War Week was amazing, God really must have been honored by it all, teenagers, awesome worship leaders.  It was really great.  My friend Beckie posted on my wall today, in the middle of what seemed like a really crappy day.  What happened today?  Nothing out of the ordinary.  Somedays just sometimes really suck.  It’s a little of this, and a little of that and at moments all that addition seems to be a huge mountain in my path that stands between me and everything. 

In those days, it’s difficult to count blessings, though I really tried.  Though at many moments, I could have gotten in my car and driven to the other side of anywhere.  However, I know I am right where I belong because I have no direction to go otherwise.

At moments I felt like I was held together by tacky glue, some moments I felt like I couldn’t breathe. 

What can I do during those times? 

I thank God.

What?  Did I really just say that?

Yes I did.

I thank God because for all that life seems like it isn’t, He is. 

When nothing seems to go the way I think it should, He’s got it under control.

When things bother me, He is right. 

It is not about me.  And sometimes I find love in that.  No matter how good or bad I am, it is about Him.  When things bother me or there are too many “me’s” or “I’s” in my sentences, He reminds me that while He loves me, it is not about me, at all.  Though He would have died, for just me.

Today was a rough day, but I find it interesting that in all the years that have passed, in all the twists and turns of our lives, my friend Erica is always there.  You have to meet Erica.  She has this amazing smile, and she tells you look good, even when you walk in after a rough day, too fat, when she tells you that you look good, you know she means it, and she loves you.  Her hugs, her smile, you know that she loves you, and if you know her, you are truly blessed by her.  And she happens to be fabulous with a comb, scissors, and some hair goop.  When you walk in feeling like a penny, you walk out feeling like a million bucks, and little has to do with your hair but how her love radiates onto you.  Her bucket overflows of love onto others.

I don’t know what tomorrow brings.  Whatever comes my way, I will have strength that comes from above, to deal with it all.  

Jesus loves me! 
He has control over all things
I am right where I belong

I will worship Him

Psalm 118:24 This is the day the Lord has made.We will rejoice and be glad in it

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

He > me

John 3:30
He must become greater; I must become less. (NIV)
He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. (NLT)
This is the assigned moment for him to move into the center, while I slip off to the sidelines. (msg)
He must increase, but I must decrease. [He must grow more prominent; I must grow less so.] (amp)
He must increase, but I must decrease (esv)
He must become greater, and I must become less important (ncv)

Picture from here
So everytime I read the bible I ask God to have something stick out to me.  Something that He wants me to know or learn.  Today while reading John 3 it was verse 30. I read the NIV, and I know this verse well.  I have a shirt on it, that I love, that I wear when painting since I always believed that I couldn’t paint but since I really do believe that I can do all things through Christ, I wear that shirt to paint so I remember that He is greater than me, so I can paint.  (sometimes I am a little slow so I must wear T-shirts to remember).

So while running today, it was a great run, but it wasn’t one of those ‘BAM’ moments where God blows me away, I think most of the time it was me trying not to die, and Him sending the wind to push me up the hills of TC, that weren’t even really hills just seemed like it at the time.  At some points they seemed like Mt. Everestt.  I was expecting some big things.  God does a lot of great things in me when I am running.  I am a good captive audience.

But not much went on until I was talking to my friend on the phone who had to put me on hold… I was telling her about my trip a little, and a few of the things that have me a little anxious, and then I told her about the fundraiser.  I’m excited about doing the fundraiser, I am not excited about having to ask others for money.  And I’ve been nervous about writing this post because I do not want to hurt anyone’s feelings but there are a few things that I’m anxious about and how I am feeling, and I’ve always tried to be honest on here, and as I type, God works on me and so as I always try to be, this is me, I’m a little annoyed that God is not giving me a get out of jail free card on this (and this is one of those times I wish He would!  But I know that He’s got to wreck me sometimes to build me back the way I should be)

I hate asking people for money.  I just do.  It’s a total pride thing. I get it.  I never really realized it, but then one day… I realized…  pride.

I don’t want to wear a yellow shirt.  This is not something that I am going to throw a fit over, D’s favorite color is yellow, it’s easily visible in an airport, I just don’t like it.  Ask me what color I think it better, not one visible in an airport.  I look terrible in yellow.  Yellow is fine.  Pride. Ugh:/

I am the only person not going as twosome.  Almost everyone is married, and there is one mom/daughter group.  Phyllis isn’t going, she doesn’t feel right, she had a stomach ache everytime she prayed about it.  It’s going to be just fine.  But it makes me feel a little lonely, that’s all, and I’m not even there yet.  And everyone has known each other for a long time.  And I love all the people I am going with it seems that they so instinctively know what the others are thinking and I just sit there sometimes thinking “you’re so dumb”.  It is NOT how they make me feel, it is how I make me feel.

As I was thinking about all these things, praying about them God said, I need to be bigger.  Remember, NONE OF THIS IS ABOUT YOU!  Yes, He said it all in caps.  I know it is not about me! I KNOW IT!  I asked God to break me down and work on the things I need working on.

BIG GOD

Little me.

BIG GOD.

Little me.

I know that people want to help donate.  I always want to, so why is it that I think it is ok to rob someone of a blessing?  Yikes.

Yellow is a pretty color.  It’s in the rainbow (a rainbow  represents God's promise).  I need to find a fabulous lipstick to go with my shirt. 

God’s best just hasn’t arrived to me.  YET.  He will, when the time is right. I trust that God is going to do some amazing things through me, all by myself.  And Phyllis isn’t meant to go, or she would be.  And the people I am going with always do make me feel important and loved in their lives, because I AM!

BIG GOD

Little me.

It’s not about me, never has been.

John 3:30 He must become greater; I must become less. (NIV)


Monday, August 08, 2011

light overcame darkness!

Does the word vacation frighten you a little?  It does me.  I almost always overeat on vacation.  I hate that about me, and I don't know why I do it, knowing the consequences, quite frankly not sure why I do it the days I'm not on vacation too.

We are up in Traverse City for a long weekend.  WOW!  it's been so great!  I've also been eating well and today I got my second run in the morning!  Yesterday 2.8 miles, this morning 3.  There's a sub close that I can run it, and so I am happy to report I got in two good runs.  Maybe not long ones, but at the end of them both I felt exhilarated and a little tired at the same time.  That is a good run.  Once I finished cooling down I remembered why it is that I loved to run last year. 

I try to only listen to music that is honoring to God so that when I run, it is full on worship.  Today I contemplated the first 5 verses of John 1 (insprired by Chilly.)
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

I was thinking about how hard sometimes it really is to run.  how hard it is to run when you are fat!  But sometimes I just know that God created me for something way more than just to be fat.  He created me to be an overcomer!  and sometimes I have to really fight off the "you're too's" that have been said to me in my life, and all the things that I hate about myself.  But here's the crazy thing, and you might just know that I've gone over the deep end loving Jesus when I say this...

God's light shines in my life, into my heart, so when the darkness comes and tries to steal my joy, from the reminders of double chins, fat stomachs, wide hips, a big butt, that the shape I am is a circle instead of a pretty hourglass, I am reminded that I can overcome, that God's light shines in the darkness, that I can do this, I can be a marathon finisher (not sure if I can run the whole thing) in October, and that it means that each week, I must add 2-3 miles to my long runs, but I can do it, because it's just 1/2 mile a run.  I can do that.  That's easy :)  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil 4:13).

Look out darkness, you're about to be overcome!!!!

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Hello Paradise!

I live a pretty busy life, always on the go, never really sitting down for meals, eating in my car (gasp), realizing at the most inopportune moments that I need gas. Realizing that one ingredient I need for dinner is missing or I find out just as I’m about to make homemade salsa that the cilantro is gross because I forget to put it in a ‘green’ bag so then that’s that… I can tell you all the things that I do, however I won’t bore you, and I won’t tell you all the things I mess up all the time (yucky cilantro is the least of my worries some days). I keep going and going trying my best to keep things going the best I can, trying to remember all time that God really does have control over everything.


We are in Traverse City for a couple days. We came up yesterday so we could really have two full days of vacation (we leave Tuesday).

This morning I got up at 7, though I wanted to go at 6:30 but couldn’t get moving until 7. SHeesh, it is vacation afterall. I wanted to get a run in before the day started. So I did, I mapped out my route of 2.81 miles and ran it in 33ish minutes, tomorrow, I’m going for 4 miles. I got in the shower… ate breakfast… read my devotionals, we went to the store to get a few things and somehow it was 12:30…

Knowing that I was going on vacation I saved a book to read Pioneer Woman because she is after all Pat’s bff, & my new favorite place to find recipes. Stacy also said it was a good read. I think today while reading it under a tree laid out on towel listening to the water hit the shore behind me, I think I had embarked on paradise. I looked up from reading to a blue sky and a perfectly green tree and thought it might not get much better than this. I know that for some being on the water would mean wake boarding and surfing, but this woman needed a little decompression. I’ve read 133 pages out of 308 today, I am sure it will be done by mid-afternoon tomorrow.

Hello from Traverse City! Enjoy your next couple days, I know I will!

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Favorites!

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens;
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens;
Brown paper packages tied up with strings;
These are a few of my favorite things.


When I love something, I really love it! I was thinking about how blessed I am and how I do have so many favorites! And yesterday I got a new favorite~ a car wash!


1. Resturaunt – Roma CafĂ© in Eastern Market 
2. Car Wash – Star in Detroit 
3. Book (not including Bible)– right now it’s 31 days to Clean, having a Martha home in a Mary way. I wish I could share Day 11 with you. Day 11 makes the whole book worth $4.99 but you can get it half off with the word BLOOM here (I promise, they they are not paying me, I just love the book this MUCH! 
4. Breakfast – OM Eggs, sausage links, HS, rye toast! YUM!
5. Drink – Iced Tea
6. Girl – Phyllis
7. Favorite Place to Vacation – Traverse City
8. Car – Gertie
9. Saying - I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love ~Mother Teresa
10. Everything – Jesus


2 Cor 12:9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me

What are your favorites?

Friday, August 05, 2011

Back to the Drawing Board

You know that I have 4 or 5 (or 10) WW books at home that never make it past week 13.  Well, now I have one that is at week 14.  And did you know that you get a silly award at 16 weeks.  I know!  Makes me just want to get that award.

I've had a rough couple weeks.  Last night though, I made it back (I skipped last week).  To be honest, I was +.8 but I think it may have been worse had I not been running/on my bike the last couple weeks.

I am taking my bike to Traverse City, my goal will be to enjoy some quiet time on the porch in the morning AFTER I ride for a couple miles along the water :)  I also plan on running while I am up there (maybe in the evenings, then I can enjoy some quiet time on the porch AFTER I run).  I also plan on enjoying marshmallows too!

If I bite it, I'll write it, if I nibble it, I'll scribble it, if I drink it, I'll ink it.

You're only a failure if you quit trying!

Won't it be amazing if I come BACK from vacation a LOSER!!!

Cleaning

I'll admit, cleaning is not my favorite thing in the world to do, but I do love a clean house. LOVE LOVE LOVE! and truth be told a clean car too, but my car is NEVER clean, my two favorite sayings about my car:

1) You never know what you might find in here (one time I found chocolate syrup)
2) Don't judge someone by the mess in their car, something has to give

Mrs. Mac starts her spring cleaning in December so she can enjoy the spring and summer. One room at a time, what a great way to do it, I guess that's why I love the 31 days to clean, having a Martha home in a Mary way.  Make sure you put in the word BLOOM for the discount!

I like the thought of just doing a little everyday. And I must say that the whole process is making me more and more grateful. Emptying out your cupboards may not seem like fun, however, seeing God's provision is quite amazing!

Thanking God for your home, even the crevices that dust gets into, knowing that my home was prefectly designed for me, I feel like when I bought my house, I knew I was 'home'. Since my gram had a home similar to mine, I think that is part of it. Even the upstairs smells the same.

Thanking God for the ability to clean. Getting on your hands and knees to clean your floors is not an option for everyone. Thanking God for my favorite cleaning supplies (I love Cabinet Magic for my cabinets and hard wood floors)

It may all seem a little silly but I'm thankful, and I want to approach each day with a grateful heart.

Psalm 147:7 Sing to the LORD with grateful praise; make music to our God on the harp.

P.S. I rested yesterday... I am now feeling so much better!