Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I am clearly not so dedicated to this meme as I had hoped, though every Thursday I think of many things for which I am thankful. This day:

  • I am thankful for the Smokey Blue Cheese that my husband brought home from the Tillamook Cheese Factory in Portland! Yum!
  • I am thankful for each of the women in my group with whom I have the privilege of spending my Thursday nights. They are such a blessing to me: going back to blessing meaning things that draw us nearer to our Lord!
  • I am thankful that I came upon some thank you notes written by the hands of some of the most precious little people in the world. I am overwhelmed with the love I feel for my N&N's!
  • I am thankful for the path I am taking in this world and how it has been so incredibly not what I would have imagined.
  • I am thankful for a husband who is growing deeper in his walk with Jesus and I have the joy of being his wife (and I do mean joy: this man can make you laugh and just feel amazing!)!

Saturday, February 20, 2010


I guess it's not just me. Bella gets this way, too. Just a bit less motivated to even hold my head up!
Actually, I just had a "slumber-party" with a friend and I'm sleepy!

Have you ever asked Jesus for something and He completely gives it to you? I have been studying Priscilla Shirer's Discerning the Voice of God. The very first week, she encouraged me to Anticipate hearing from God! If I'm not expecting it, I won't be listening. Bingo.
The last few weeks I feel like I have tapped a vein of pure gold. He really does speak all the time! It's not some Sound of Music moment where I'm up on a meadow spinning and singing and He opens the heavens and thunders with His voice. It's definitely the still, small voice.
Just today, He guided me in a communication I felt I needed to make and I'm so glad He did. I was mistaken in my conclusions, and had I gone my way, it could have been much worse. As it is, I was easily able to apologize and clear things up without completely sticking my foot in my mouth. Why He chose to save my pride a bit is beyond me, but I am thankful.
This also has proven to me that once you get the taste of intimate conversation with Jesus, you just want more. Way more. It's just so practical! The amazing thing is, He wants it too! The only "glitch" is that you have to take His advice or He really will quit giving it to you. No more of the asking "what do you think?" if you have no intention of changing your plans. That reminds me of the saying we had at a church we used to attend: "Yes, Lord! Now, what's the question?" You have to be careful if you are sincere in this, because He just may ask you for something supremely difficult. The rewards will supremely worth it.
I'm loving the conversations. I'm going to keep listening. It's much more rewarding to have conversations that are two-way!
That's something to keep my head up!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


I grew up in a church that gave me some very wonderful basics and taught me to love Jesus. That lovely church also seemed to have a very big emphasis on being anti-catholic. What I mean by this is that in retrospect, it seemed to have no real traditions and made a huge point of proclaiming that the sacraments were acts of obedience, not salvation (of which I still agree). I think the only reason we ever did any sacraments (baptism and the Lord's supper) were out of obedience. We had no statues, no liturgy, nothing that would possibly tempt us to put value on anything other than our relationship with Jesus. I think this is a wonderful motivation, but I felt a little left-out.
Now, I should say that this may not be the official position of this particular church in that particular denomination, but that's what I got from it. When I grew up and had the opportunity to attend churches of other denominations, I often became pious and scoffed at the traditions and formalities observed. I took the importance placed on these formalities to judge their motives and their hearts, all-the-while still feeling left-out.
Then I listened.
It was really beautiful. I hadn't really paid much attention to the creeds or how it may sound to Jesus to hear His people in unison, proclaiming their faith in Him. I was moved almost to tears. I became a huge fan of liturgy, though for just a short while (I'm a bit rebellious and don't like people to tell me what to do or how to worship - I'm working on that, remember!). I have since found some real value in observing traditions with which I did not grow up.
Lent is one such tradition.
Without any instruction, I have chosen to try and make the next weeks leading up to Easter a time to truly focus myself on hearing from Him. I'm not one to remove something from my diet or stop a behavior that I shouldn't be doing anyway. Instead, I'm going to try and insert a time each day that I will be still and listen for His still, small voice.
This may sound like such a simple thing, and it is. It is not easy. I don't often come to the Throne without many, many words. I'm a talker. He knows that, too. I really want to be a listener. I want to be one of those people who can hear God speak frequently. I've had my big moment of personal revelation, but I really want to be in full conversation with God; full meaning two-way.
I'm excited about this Lenten Season. I can't wait to hear what God says to me! It's pretty incredible that the Lord of the universe and creator of all things would actually WANT to have those private conversations with me. How can I resist? I am no longer feeling left-out.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentines Day Dress-up

For this Valentines Day, I thought I would dress up a little for Pat to go to church and actually do my hair, makeup, and I even gussied it up and wore my Grandma B's earrings! I guess it's been a while, 'cause I got a LOT of comments! I think it was the earrings, because seriously, my regrowth is becoming horrific. Unfortunately, in our NEED LESS PROJECT, touch up highlights are not on the docket. I digress. Grandma B's FABULOUS earrings:

When we got home from church and redressed in our casual clothes, Pat asked me to help him out in the shop. I thought I would continue my gifting spirit and give him a hand. He asked me to be a guinea pig and test some welding rod that he'd like to use in his upcoming welding lessons.
Oh, you didn't know? Yes, he has had the vision of giving kids an introduction to welding. He is very motivated and excited for this venture and has been working to make up a type of itinerary. He's got one boy on the list to get started this week.
I went out and let him teach me how to weld. I've never stick-welded, so this was a new one for me.

As usual, he was a great teacher! He taught me to strike an arc, how to push the rod into the weld, and coached me to take my time and make sure I penetrated both pieces of metal with the weld. He makes it look easy, and it's a little tricky, but I began to get the feel for it and didn't do too bad!
I think this actually made the better dress-up gift!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Red Letters by Tom Davis: Book Review

I was very excited to receive this book from my sister who absolutely loved it! It took me a while to finish other readings and get started with this, but once I got it opened, it was hard to put away. Tom Davis presents the question of what might it look like if we really lived out what Jesus taught. We say we believe all the "red letters" that Jesus spoke, but we rarely practice what we preach. Oh, we practice the smallest amount possible in a way that is comfortable to us and makes us feel like we are doing something, while a child in a remote village far away wastes away, alone, hungry. The sad part is, we aren't moved to action by this. Tom Davis clearly has a passion to wake us up to what is happening in the world and to spur us on to action. I was crushed by some of the statistics and it has further my drive to do more.

On a personal note, I have been more and more annoyed at the superficiality of people. I am horrified at how much money we spend on things that are temporal. We meaning all of us. I am aghast at how much people spend on luxuries while never turning any attention to needs outside their own home. I think it's so sad the attitude I've seen after the Haiti disaster. I have heard so many or read so many thoughts that were hostile to helping others because they wanted more for themselves. We Christians should be in the forefront of giving. So much so that we are looked at with confusion and wonder. We should not make sense in our culture today. We should be radically different!

What if we really lived the Red Letters? What if our faith really bled? How many lives would then be saved? Will you be able to tell Jesus that you just couldn't afford to help Him and yet could afford those new clothes, daily coffee stop, or getting your hair colored every 8 weeks?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Quick Note...

OK people. You prayed too much!
My husband called and had me pick him up at the airport at noon yesterday. It's a mixed blessing, as it means he is home, but now not working again. Fortunately, he did pick up a side job that may last a week or so! God is still providing our daily bread and we are still thankful!
Of course, this also means he has me out helping him and preventing me from spending too much time on the computer! On that note, I'd better get supper on the table!