Tag Archives: church

Thanksgiving. Day 18.

I am thankful for

my church

and

the people in it

My church is pretty amazing. Every month we do family focused activities in order to keep the family atmosphere. I have gained some amazing friends since switching churches.

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A Thankful Heart | Day 7.

I know I’ve said family already but for today I want to focus on my children:

Eman & ZigZag

There are no words to express all of the emotions that go along with Mommyhood. It’s a whole new world that is constantly changing. If you have more than one child, the milestones reached with the oldest are not necessarily how things will happen when the youngest reaches those same milestones. It is amazing to me how incredibly dissimilar yet alike my boys are. They both have fairly happy dispositions most of the time. Yet, even when they’re happy there’s such a difference of expression from one to the other.

I have learned more about myself in the last seven {and a half!} years than I’ve probably learned in the last thirty combined. New ways of teaching, giving, receiving. There just aren’t words enough to express how much I love these little dudes and how drastically they’ve changed my life {for the better!}.

ZigZag will make up little songs that say, “I love you Mommy” in them.

Eman will come up as though he has something very serious to say and then wink at me before giving me the biggest hug.

To quote the movie Something’s Gotta Give “They make me want to be a better person”.

I just love them!


Where Were You?

There are many infamous days in our history.

JFK’s assassination.

Pearl Harbor.

The OKC bombing.

Just to name a few. These are days that regardless of everything else we remember every detail of where we were and what we were doing at that exact moment.

9/11 is one of those days we will always remember every detail.

I was asleep when my mom called from South Dakota and told me to turn on the tv, to any news channel. Normally I would have said, “later” and gone back to sleep but she had that tone of voice that you don’t argue with. I turned the television on to see the smoke billowing from the first tower and just in time to watch the second tower get hit.

My initial reaction and the first thing I remember asking my mom is, “What’s gonna happen to my brother?” There was never a question of whether he would go. It was a matter of when. Just a few years earlier my brother had enlisted in the National Guard. By a fluke of accidental miracles he was never deployed.

 

 

 

Later that morning I headed to work. First day out of training at a new job. I remember people calling in and complaining about President Bush preempting everything. Eight hours later I was so drained from watching the events of the day and dealing with people’s selfishness. I know more than once I reminded people how we felt when the OCK bombing happened and that the attacks on the World Trade Centers, the Pentagon, and the crash in Pennsylvania were much worse than anything we’ve encountered before. They didn’t want to hear it. In the days following, however, things changed. The overall attitude of customers was one of ‘how can I make this better?’ instead of ‘it’s all about me’.

Life changed in that moment.

For thousands of people, lives were flipped upside down. The people lost were mothers, fathers, daughters, sisters, sons, brothers, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Each person has a face, a story, a life that was cut short.

To the Soldiers, EMTs, Firefighters, PD’s, other public service agents I’ve not mentioned – thank you for your time and your sacrifice to help those in need. You are true heroes.




Mountains.

The Climb – Miley Cyrus

Click the link above and listen to this song as you read this.

We tried a new church just after Thanksgiving last year. I’m finding it necessary to have one a little closer to home for several reasons. I was more than a little nervous. I’ve tried new churches before and always get nervous but that’s gotten worse since I have 2 little people who depend on me for everything. Who God gave me and who I feel this enormous responsibility to make sure they are taught about Jesus and who He is and everything He’s done for us. One of the biggest steps in doing this is finding the right church. One that will not only teach my kids in a way I agree with (by teaching them the Word) but in a way that shows them just how real God’s word is AND one that I can worship in and be 100% who I’m supposed to be in Christ.

That’s pretty demanding if you think about it. So often we hear, “you don’t have to make everyone happy as long as you’re happy” and there are times when that applies but this isn’t one of them. It is absolutely imperative that all three of us are getting what we need on the level we need it – especially from church. And no, I’m not talking about the actual physical building we call a church. I’m talking about the Church, as in the people who make up the church. When we go to a church expecting things to be what we need we’re setting some pretty high expectations for those who are leading worship, teaching the kids, running the book store and coffee shop, and preaching/teaching. That list goes on and on.

With that in mind, I walked into this new church with VERY high expectations. And I was completely blown away. My kids loved their classes (although E-Man does say he has to sit still too long sometimes but I think he’s enticed by the pool and foosball tables!). Worship was amazing. And then there was the sermon.

How often do you hear a grown man quoting Miley Cyrus? Honestly, that rarely happens and if it does it’s a single dad who’s trying to impress someone in regards to the time he spends with his daughter. Okay, that’s a bit cynical but you get my point. That’s something that just doesn’t happen. Well, the speaker that Sunday started his sermon, not with words, by playing a clip from Miley Cyrus’ song The Climb (see above link). And then he started talking about mountains.

Now, unfortunately, I don’t have my notes in front of me so I don’t have the scripture references he used but I will tell you what I got out of his sermon.

There’s a verse in the Bible (Matthew 17:20 Amplified Version – italics & bold mine – courtesy of YouVersion)

20 He said to them, Because of the littleness of your faith [that is, your lack of firmly relying trust]. For truly I say to you, if you have faith [that is living] like a grain of mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, Move from here to yonder place, and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.

So often the second portion of that verse is taken a bit too literal. Out of context even. We are taught that as Christians we have the ability to move mountains. True. Very true. We’ve also become complacent that just because the mountain hasn’t moved means that we’re meant to be here, going through this trial or tribulation for a time. Just like Jesus spent 40 days being tempted in the desert. And when that time is finished God will removed the mountain before us. But what we fail to see is that not every mountain is meant to be moved. Some are meant to be climbed.

Take a look at the following list (compiled in part using Max Lucado’s book Fearless: Imagine Your Life Without Fear — Chapter 14):

* Noah’s ark lands: Mountains of Ararat

* Isaac as a sacrifice: Mount Moriah

* Moses and the burning bush: Mount Sinai

* Elijah ascending into Heaven: Mount Horeb

* Christ Crucified: Calvary

* Christ’s Transfiguration: Mount Hermon

Some of the most important and life changing events in the Bible happened  on the tops of mountains. Think about that. If the people we grew up knowing from the Bible had to face their mountains and climb them in order to see the goodness God had for them at critical times in their lives, why would we try to remove the mountains in our lives? Why wouldn’t we want to race up those mountains as fast as possible in order to see what God has in store for us?

I admit that I am one who has previously stated something akin to, “God will remove this mountain when it’s time”. Trust me when I tell you I’m not saying that anymore. Yes, I do believe that some mountains are to be removed and cast into the sea but the keyword there is some. Not all.

So many times I have said, “I can’t”. No more. I know that life as we know it is only going to get worse. Let me rephrase that. The world as we know it is only going to get worse – go read Revelation, Daniel, and Isaiah. Why on Earth should we, whose home is in Heaven, succumb to the things of this world? Why can’t I climb the mountains and receive all that God has for me and my family?!

Did you get that? Climb the mountains in your life. Rely on God to be with you and trust him to lead you through paths of righteousness. In the 23rd Psalm, the Bible says; (Amplified – italics mine)

4 Yes, though I walk through the [deep, sunless] valley of the shadow of death, I will fear or dread no evil, for You are with me; Your rod [to protect] and Your staff [to guide], they comfort me.

 

We have to make it through the valleys in order to climb the mountains but when we do so with God there is no fear. God guides us. God protects us. God comforts us.

What are you waiting for?

 


Ten Day Challenge. Day 8.

So, way over on my facebook page a friend challenged me to a 10 day challenge. Normally I won’t do these things but this one piqued my interest. It’s a quite a bit different than your normal “challenges”. At least what’s considered normal for Facebook these day! :)

Here’s the rules:

Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.

Day Two: Nine things about yourself.

Day Three: Eight ways to win your heart.

Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.

Day Five: Six things you wish you’d never done.

Day Six: Five people who mean a lot (in no order whatsoever)

Day Seven: Four turn offs.

Day Eight: Three turn ons.

Day Nine: Two smileys that describe your life right now.

Day Ten: One confession.

 

Here’s my Day 8 –

Three turn ons:

 

Rather – the 3 things I look at first 🙂

 

1. Hands. Hands are incredible. They can be used to build and to heal, but they can also be used to destroy. You can tell a lot about a person by their hands.

2. Smile. A smile that makes the eyes twinkle. A real one. Not that fake stuff or that “trying to be cool” smirk.

3. Eyes. Eyes are the window to the soul. That being said – no secrets. 🙂

 

 

*This list is NOT all inclusive!

 


Ten Day Challenge. Day 6.

So, way over on my facebook page a friend challenged me to a 10 day challenge. Normally I won’t do these things but this one piqued my interest. It’s a quite a bit different than your normal “challenges”. At least what’s considered normal for Facebook these day! :)

Here’s the rules:

Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.

Day Two: Nine things about yourself.

Day Three: Eight ways to win your heart.

Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.

Day Five: Six things you wish you’d never done.

Day Six: Five people who mean a lot (in no order whatsoever)

Day Seven: Four turn offs.

Day Eight: Three turn ons.

Day Nine: Two smileys that describe your life right now.

Day Ten: One confession.

Here’s my Day 6 –

Five people who mean a lot:

1. Eman & ZigZag. Yes, I’m cheating and putting two very different people on the same answer. Mainly because they are equally important to me. Everything I do or don’t do is because of them and reflects on them in many ways.

2. My parents. Yes, another 2 for 1 answer. Regardless of the times we disagree, my parents are the only ones who’ve been there for me in everything. I may not always like (or even solicit) their advice but I know they love me and they only want what’s best.

3. My friends. Who keep me sane and drive me crazy all at once. Who remind me of who I am and encourage me to listen to God’s voice when everyone else’s voices are overwhelming.

4. My brother and his wife. My brother is one of the most perceptive, intuitive people I’ve ever known and I’ve learned the hard way to follow his suggestions. His wife is gorgeous and balances him very well and along with becoming a good friend she is my sister and I love them both!

5. My Jesus. And before you argue that He’s not real, or He died on a cross, or He lived thousands of years ago – let me just tell you He is as real as you or me if not more so. And if you don’t believe, I suggest you try getting to know him and then tell me just how real He is in your life.

 


Friday Favorites – 2 weeks worth

I’m sitting here editing the hundreds, possibly thousands, of pictures I’ve taken in the last few weeks and it occurred to me that I failed to post a #FF post last week and this week both. So, I’m going to combine the two weeks now. And yes, by the time I’m finished with this post it will be Sunday. But, you know what they say, “better late than never”! Who’s “they” anyway?!

And the memories are going to be all jumbled up because, well, it’s 2 weeks combined and without having my calendar in front of me I’m uncertain of what happened when! Suffice it to say that the following events happened sometime in the last 2 weeks! 🙂

Here goes nothing!

One Saturday we had 2 soccer games and 2 birthday parties all before 4pm. Made for a very busy day, let me tell you! However, it was the first soccer games of the season and ZigZag’s first ever team soccer game! It was so exciting!!

E-man has had 4 out of 5 “green” days at school! I’m counting this as all week because technically he wasn’t at school on Friday so for the entirety of the week he did have, he was on his best behavior! This does, however, mean $5 goes into the piggy bank but he’s also that much closer to his goal of getting a DS for Christmas!

E-man has officially started Cub Scouts! He’s a Tiger Cub! We got the uniform, now to just get those patches on it before the next meeting! 🙂

My friend’s daughter had a baby! A bittersweet moment as she’s still just a teenager (17) but happy at the same time because baby is healthy and is in a very loving home!

We planted lots and lots of flowers with/for my mom. Some will live and come back next year. Other’s will die and will have to be replaced next year, but we had lots of fun doing it!

Pawhuska Bible Church had their 15th year anniversary and celebrated with a picnic after church. There was so much food and desserts and oh so many water balloons! But, the biggest draw was the dunk tank!

I think that’s about it. Not as long as I thought it would be! 🙂 The only other thing that happened that was so very much fun was the planning party for the PTO we’re hoping to get started at the school. Very exciting stuff happening here!


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