Monday, December 6, 2010

Children are a gift...

Psalm 127:3 "Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from Him."

Now, I TRULY believe that children are a gift - I am so thankful to have three babies born to me (carried to full term with no problems or complications) and what a privilege it is to have them!

But I am reminded in SO many way each and every day - what that word "gift" truly means in each child...

With Chayse - its her telling me yesterday "I love cleaning the house with you Mom! You make it fun!" YEAH!! A child with a heart to clean (it just doesn't always flow out of her in regards to her own room)!!

With Connor - I LOVE his laugh (and I love that he loves to be tickled so I can hear that laugh often)!! He and I are known for just looking at each other and giggling... I love that! (I hope he never loses that!)

With Colton - it is his wit and wisdom (he also gives the BEST bear hugs to any nearby legs!!) but today I have to share with you some of Colton's profound wisdom that he shared with me this morning...

Colton:  Mom, when do I turn 8?
Mom:    Colton! You just turned 7 - its a whole year away!!
Colton:  I know Mom, but what day?
Mom:    November 29th - same as this year... (wondering to myself, what comes next??)
Colton:  You mean, I have my birthday every year on November 29th - the same day - NO WAY! That is too cool!!
Mom:    (Bursts into laughter!!)

See why I know that children are a gift from the Lord - I NEEDED that laughter this morning and maybe you did too!!

Enjoy every moment... they go by way too quickly!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Forgiveness... its tricky

 This is a devotion I read the other day that made me stop and think - so I thought I would share it with you...

Matthew 6:14-15 "For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins."

"In life, we all have unfair things that happen to us." Isn't that the truth!!

"We can choose to hold on to the hurt, become bitter & angry, and let it poison our future; or, we can choose to let it go and trust God to make it up to us." (I think that is easier said than done sometimes!!)

"You might not think that you are able to forgive because someone hurt you so badly."

"But realize, you don't forgive for their sake; you forgive for your own sake. When you forgive, you are taking away their power to hurt you."  (That is the part that just makes me stop & think...)

"But if you hold on to that offense and stay angry (hurt or offended), you are only poisoning your own life and disconnecting yourself from God."  (My hurt and offense disconnects me from my loving Father - that's just NOT right!!)

My mother-in-law often makes a statement to anyone listening - she says "Just because you think you have the right to be angry (or offended) - doesn't mean that you should be. Mercy is better than justice any day..."
Now, as much as that statement frustrates me when I hear it - it is a great reminder...
He had nothing in His heart but forgiveness and mercy for the people that had hurt him (even in the midst of his pain). So how can I stand as His representative and not do the same...

So me, I'm working on forgiveness today...
1 John 4:12 "No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and His love is brought to full expression in us."

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A new view to Christmas

I found this over at Pete Wilson's blog and it just JUMPED out at me - SO perfect for Christmas!!

I had someone tell me about a Christmas reading plan called Rediscovering The Christmas Season that was available at I checked it out and love it so I thought I would invite you to read along with me. I’ll probably post on it from time to time over the next couple weeks.

I put the first two days of the plan below but I really encourage you to go to and sign up for a free account. It’s a wonderful tool I think you’ll love.

So here we go… I'm on Day 2.

You in?

Dec 1: Luke 2:21-40

Dec 2: Matthew 1

After reading the overview of the plan - it explains Advent a little more (which I have to admit, I've not taken a whole lot of time to understand before). I understand the 1st Advent that happened, and that we're waiting for the 2nd Advent (Jesus coming).
But here's an interesting statement they made on this Christmas reading about Advent (which started yesterday):
"Advent reminds us to look forward to His return every day. This season is about resetting Jesus Christ at the center of our lives."

So there's my goal for the next 25 days - to "reset Jesus Christ at the center of my life". Instead of letting presents, baking, decorations, parties & just general "busyness" be the center - I'm taking time (myself and with my kids) to take a different look at what the first Christmas season looked like.

Consider yourself challenged...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

I "borrowed" The Funk... but its okay!

I was just sitting here this morning contemplating the events of the last couple of days and (honestly) dreading the funeral I am attending today (its for a young woman who is my age), but knowing that I should be there.
Through my tears about the day, I gave myself an attitude check (which I'll explain after) but when I got home I read this blog post by Pete Wilson ( which was a good reminder (and a great "boost" that I heard God speak it to me before I got to this article - YEAH!!)
So - what to do with a "FUNK"...

The Funk

Ever have one of those days?
You know those days, when everything goes wrong!
Who hasn’t had one of those days?

I had one the other day. It was the kind of day where I think I would have been better off just staying in bed. The kind of day that makes you wonder if you can do anything right.

Anyway, I was sitting there in the midst of my very bad day and jotted down a few choices I felt I had to shake this funk. So here’s my list. Hope it helps you on your very bad day.

  1. Do something nice for someone else. While I’m not really sure that being selfless for selfish reasons is exactly Biblical, it sure does seem to work.
  2. Tell yourself, “Well, at least I ______________.”  At least, you went to the gym, or played with your kids, or walked the dog, or read your children a story, or recycled, or saved the world from catastrophic disaster. Okay, you probably didn’t do the latter but you get the point.
  3. Go to bed early. I’ve said this before but sometimes the most spiritual thing you can do is get some sleep. I’m always amazed how a little extra sleep helps you have a whole new perspective the next morning.   Lamentations3:22 Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 
  4. Keep a proper perspective. Ask yourself: “Will this matter in a month? In a year?”
  5. Be grateful. Remind yourself that a lousy day isn’t a catastrophic day.  Probably, things could be worse. In fact, I believe most of it can and will be redeemed by God.
 So... my idea to add to all of this - thankfulness. Plain and simple thankfulness...
Like I said, I had God already help me deal with my "funk" in the car before I read this - and His gentle reminder was "Remember what you do have, not what you've lost..." and my heart FILLED with thankfulness.
  • 3 healthy children that I carried to full term (in my pregnancy) and are still healthy today
  • A spouse that is with me, stands by my side, loves me and enjoys every bit of the 15 years that we've spent together
  • That I am healthy and whole and able to walk out the plan that my Father has for my life
  • And that no matter how many trips to the hospital I make (in laws, new babies, friends) God is still God and He cares for us AND His grace is sufficient to help me make every trip.
Psalm 118:29 (The Message)
"You're my God, and I thank you. O my God, I lift high your praise. Thank God—he's so good. His love never quits!"

Monday, November 15, 2010

I'm SO glad He's my strength

"Don't be afraid, I've redeemed you.
   I've called your name. You're mine.
When you're in over your head, I'll be there with you.
   When you're in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you're between a rock and a hard place,
   it won't be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
   The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
I paid a huge price for you:"
Isaiah 43:2-4

Monday, August 23, 2010

They get so big, so fast...

Our Soccer star (no action shot - sorry!!)

Brothers with their common like - TOY STORY & Legos!!

Connor played Soccer - he's the one in the middle KICKING IT!!

Colton played baseball this Summer - he's #1
Aren't they cute??
Playing like a big boy - first year on the slip-n-slide!
As we're starting the final countdown to school starting (2 weeks!!)I am amazed at how much my kiddos have changed!!
I thought I'd share a few pics with you...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What a day...

It's only 9:39 am as I am typing this - I have been up for almost 3 hours now and SO much has happened... (it seems like to me)

1. Made/ate breakfast with the family...
2. I used my brand new hot pink laundry basket (which was a GREAT motivator to do laundry this morning) to do a couple of loads of laundry.)
3. Kids and I went on a mile walk/run - VERY good for me!! But I wasn't sure how far I had walked/ran so...
4. I decided to take the motorcycle out to see how far I had walked. Tried a couple of times to get it started... VERY unsuccessful.
BUT I had moved it out into the driveway during my attempt to start it and so I needed to move it back into the garage.
When I attempted to do this, I tipped my hubby 1300 VTX (which means it's heavy for my delicate, female frame) over on myself.
THANKFULLY it didn't hit the ground, I did catch it and get it back upright. (Only a small bruise on my left hip to show for it)
Called my hubby to see what I was doing wrong and (of course) it starts up with NO problem. Praise God!!
So now I took it out for a 2 1/2 mile ride (to see how far I had walked) and only stalled on one of my turns (turns have been my downfall - I'm pushing myself to get better) and did fabulous on the other big turn (a u-turn). YEAH!! I even got it up the driveway and into the garage without stalling, only 1 brief pause. :)
5. I decided to clean "Dan" (short for Moondance Alexander) the fish's tank today (which is not my favorite) and here's where I have to explain something...

In Proverbs 18:21 (in the Message translation) it says:
"Words kill, words give life;
they're either poison or fruit—you choose."

Yesterday, I did NOT want to clean the fish tank - it is my LEAST favorite chore in the whole house... so I told the kids (jokingly) that I wanted to kill their fish instead of cleaning his tank. WRONG CHOICE!!
(Its funny though - because when I told them this, Colton said "Oh good - then we can get a dog!!" Is he my son or what??? Always see the positive!!)
So today as I go to clean the tank, I am chasing "Dan" around the tank with the catcher and he is swimming away from he as usual. So I get the bright idea to remove some of the water (which is normal - there are vent holes in the top which easily let water out).
As I proceed to let some water open the lid pops open (on accident) and out falls "Dan" down the drain. And Colton says - "Oh Mom!! Dan came out!!". I set the tank down, squealed and looked down the drain... he was GONE!!
So... a great time to teach my children about the power of their words (even when they are joking).
Yesterday, I joked about killing their fish - today I did...

Let's hope this day improves as we head out to Petco to get another fish!!
I'm so thankful for God's grace - aren't you?? :)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Oh, I need to remember this...

Be Mindful Of Christ’s Obedience At The Cross

2 Corinthians 10:5
“casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,”

Have you ever felt condemned because of the bad thoughts you have had? You could be in the middle of a prayer meeting when suddenly a dirty thought enters your mind. Actually, it is the devil who puts such thoughts in your mind. Then, he steps back, looks at you and knocks you on your head, saying, “How can you call yourself a Christian and still think such thoughts?”

I used to be in bondage over the bad thoughts I had because I felt that I had to confess every one of them and seek God’s forgiveness. But that is not what God’s Word exhorts us to do. You see, God wants us to bring “every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ”. Now, whose obedience are we to focus on? Christ’s obedience and not our own obedience!

But what is “the obedience of Christ”? It is His obedience at the cross, where “by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous”. (Romans 5:19) Jesus shed His blood for us at the cross. This means that when our thoughts condemn us, we are to focus our thoughts on Jesus’ obedience at the cross.

My friend, the devil can only make inroads into our minds when he gets us to focus on our obedience instead of Christ’s obedience. His strategy is to point us to our obedience or the lack of it to determine our standing before God. But just as our position as sinners is not based on what we do, but what the first Adam did, in the same way, we are forever righteous today not because of what we do, but because of what Christ, the last Adam, did on the cross.

So the next time your thoughts seem to condemn you, say, “I am righteous whether I have good or bad thoughts. My righteousness has nothing to do with my obedience. Jesus’ obedience at the cross made me righteous.” Then, go ahead and pray, knowing that you have access to God and His favor, and that He hears the prayer of the righteous. (Proverbs 15:29)

Thank you Lord for using Joseph Prince to remind me of this... :)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Trust... its a tricky thing?

Life has been BUSY lately... I feel like the days fly by faster than I can blink sometimes. And in the middle of that "busyness" are three children that are growing and maturing SO quickly - I feel like they are becoming adults right before my very eyes.
I mean - just look at my daughter in the picture above... doesn't she look like she's 13 (or older)!! YIKES!!

As I look at my VERY old daughter - I wonder... am I a good mother to her? Am I teaching her to talk to God no matter what (and talk to me as well)? How can I keep her from making the same mistakes (or worse) than I did? And so many more...

And then I remember...
"For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome." (Jeremiah 29:11)
She is, he is, and he is - HIS!! My Heavenly Father managed (quite well) to keep me, lead me and love me through all my mistakes (and keep me from making many more) - HE can do a MUCH better job with all three of the treasures that He's entrusted me with!

So I choose to trust Him with their lives... so there's where trust is a "tricky thing".

When I want to worry (just a little) about if my daughter is REALLY making good choices... or if my son will ever learn to stop hitting people... or if my other son will stop doing things that aren't good or safe for him... I CHOOSE to trust in Him to lead them (and give me the patience I need to help them through) and lead me!
Its a tricky thing to FULLY give Him control and trust in Him... but its WORTH IT!

So that's my choice today... to trust in Him (no matter what)!!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

An interesting Easter day...

Okay, I know its not Easter yet, but we celebrated Easter today with my family and friends....

Here's the way it started - 2 handsome boys and a beautiful girl in a pretty skirt (that SHE picked out) that (along with her curly hair) made her look MUCH older than her Momma was ready to see... (but MAN - she did look pretty!!)

We enjoyed a nice lunch with a Mom & Dad, their 3 daughters (and their husbands & husband-to-be), another very special Mother, 3 grandpas, 1 grandma, 8 cousins and a beautiful girl from Russia... it was a FUN crew!!

After all the quiche you could handle, cheesy potatoes, yummy strawberries, cinnamon rolls and WAY too much food we let the kids go outside and find the eggs that the men had so cleverly hid for them...

It was SUCH a lovely time!! :) Seriously - I LOVE family time!

Then we had nap time for the boys - and my boy of VERY special sleeping positions surprised me yet again...

He is sleeping in the bookshelf of his bed in his underwear... what a special boy!

THEN... while the other boy was supposed to be sleeping - he did this instead

Yes, that is a BRAND NEW pack of bubble gum from HIS SISTER'S Easter basket - and in case you didn't know... he SWALLOWS his bubble gum!!
Just in case that wasn't weird enough - after dinner he needed to go #2, which when he did he yelled from the bathroom "Hey Colton, LOOK!! I can pee out of my butt!! How did I do that?" (Sorry to be so gross, but it was TOO FUNNY!!)
It was a great time to point out "This is why we DON'T eat an entire pack of bubble gum!!
Doesn't life just make you laugh sometimes?? :) It does for me!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Haven't I been here before???

There are so many times in life when I feel like "I've been here before, haven't I?" and my life feels like its going around in circles - I enjoy it - just round and round...
  • Successfully potty training another child
  • Mac & Cheese and Hot Dogs for lunch (again)
  • Vacuuming/Dusting the house (again)
  • ANOTHER spelling test (with the daughter)
  • Teaching another child to "sound out the words - you can do it"
  • Cleaning/purging another child's room (AGAIN) for the 2nd time this month
  • Check the facebook, blogs, twitter, etc
  • It's time for "insert junior high activity here" again - where am I going this time Lord?
I think you get my point...

But in a day, like today, where I stayed home to work today, it started off as very "routine" and I got about as excited as you can get... and then the Lord interrupted it

I was reading/studying to share at church tomorrow night with the Junior Highers and I read something in my devotion/book/devotional e-mail (not sure which one) - that my Father wants time with me (not "okay Lord, here's your 10 minutes") but just time in my day, spending time with me...

Today that time was discovering a new worship song on iTunes that just grabbed my heart and reminded me of how much He loves me... and not because I'm perfect (FAR from it), not because of who I am, for my hubby, my kids, my parents OR my job - just because He likes me (despite all my failures)

All of a sudden - that was it - the day was no longer routine or boring or predictable (although it did go a little like I thought it would - remember, I said I'm NOT perfect) but there was a new sense of enjoyment in it...
  • my sons laugh
  • my other boys smile
  • sharing a book with my boys
  • learning with my girl
  • remembering how much I love to talk with my Grandma (even for a brief 5 minute phone call)
  • paying all my bills (yes, even that was peaceful)
  • thinking of how much I'm glad my husband is in my life
and SO much more, but I don't want to bore you with the details... but all this started from a sweet time of worship (that was MUCH needed!!!)

So what song is stirring your heart today? Today, I needed a good love song for Him to remind myself what I have in Him and with Him.

I'm thankful...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

I'm thankful...

"You're blessed when you're content with just who you are—no more, no less. That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought." Matthew 5:5 (MSG)

Today, I'm SO thankful for all that I have (and I want to stay that way)...

Its sad that sometimes it takes a huge tragedy for us to see what we REALLY have in front of us and be TRULY thankful for it - but I'm purposing to see Him in the everyday things (without the vision of the tragedy in front of me) - but nonetheless today I'm thankful for so much.

  • I'm thankful that I have a house to wake up in that's warm and not collapsed on top of me and my family.
  • I have food for breakfast (and a choice of what I want to eat)
  • I have electricity, clean water, heat, and roads that I can drive on to get to the store to get food.
  • Clothes to clothe myself and my children and keep them warm
  • PLENTY of blankets for my children to keep them warm at night
  • I have children that are healthy and whole and not in danger (and not without parents)
  • My husband and I both have jobs that we get paid well and have health insurance.
  • I have the opportunity to help others and be an agent of change on the other side of the world with just my prayers (and my finances too)
  • I am SURROUNDED by friends and family that love us and care for us!
  • I have a Father who loves me and is everything I need...
Like I said - My goal and my aim is to be sensitive to remember this EVERY DAY (and not just the days when pictures of all that is wrong in the world flood my RSS feed) and thank my Father for all that I have.

So Father today - I am content in where I am.
I always want more of you in my life - but I am thankful for where I am...
and I choose to see life through your eyes.