This was the face I got after asking her to make a "pretty" face. We need to work on our pretty face a little I think.
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Saturday, March 26, 2011
I wish I could say with confidence that this is probably the last of the snow for the season, but unfortunately there is more snow forecasted...hopefully just a mix of snow/sleet/slush, but still. I am ready for real Spring weather to come back around. It was a nice night of warm tomato soup and sandwiches. I can try to be positive right?? And SK had a blast getting to play in it. But, man is it cold.
Friday, March 25, 2011
Sk loved Ted Drewe's so much that she was stealing Daddy's after finishing the one she shared with Mommy :)
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
In another book I read by Dan Allender called The Healing Path, Dr. Allender uses the story of Hosea's wife Gomer who was a whore to depict the "the healing path" that we must take. God takes us into the desert in our suffering and hardship to strip us of our "other lovers" who will not follow us there. These "other lovers" are the idols of our hearts and God shows us that they will not rescue us from the desert. But God will. He resorts us there and returns His adulterous bride back to Himself.
"Turning toward our pain is counterintuitive. But in fact, the heart of Christianity is that the way to life is through death, the pathway to resurrection is through crucifixion...
...the quickest way to reach the sun and the light of day is not to run west chasing after it, but to head east into the darkness until you finally reach the sunrise."
When we are honest to ourselves and to God about our hurts and pains, it is there that God often reveals Himself to us. God invites us to wrestle with Him. He can handle it. There are countless examples of this in scripture. Job and the Psalmists are great examples. Take a look at Psalm 13:
In the first stanza David is expressing his sorrow and questioning God about it:
1 How long, LORD? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Where then should we go after we have begun to wrestle with sorrow? It is usually one of two places. One might be to abandon faith and hope and a turn away from God. The other might be what the spirit of God leads David to do in the next stanza:
3 Look on me and answer, LORD my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
4 and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.
David cries out to God in desperation. When we find ourselves is the desert, will we look to the only one who will follow after us there, or will we turn from Him and wonder of into the horizon of hopeless despair? When we turn to the Lord He reminds us of who He is and what He has done as David recounts in the last stanza. He closes in praise to his Savior.
5 But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
6 I will sing the LORD’s praise,
for he has been good to me.
I hope this is encouraging...It has been for me.
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Approaching culture and the unbelieving world....My thoughts below on a book I read called Learning Evangelism From Jesus, written by one of my professors, Jerram Barrs.
I must say, there is a great deal that I can take from this book to apply to my own life, but I will attempt to be concise and to discuss the things that most impacted my thoughts on evangelism. There is something so simple and yet so very extraordinary about the idea of learning evangelism from Jesus. In my mind, I affirm the fact the Jesus is the greatest evangelist, but it is not until I read this book, and contemplated the nature in which Jesus seeks the unbeliever, that I gained a greater understanding of what evangelism truly is.
As I fight with the little pharisee that is in me, I have received weapons for that battle in this book. One theme that runs through this book is that every human being has been created by God to bear His image. This is something that I have always known, but have often failed to truly see. In my own sin, I often times look at another person and only see the ugliness of their sin rather than their beauty as an image bearer. How then, can I see God's image in others? How is that supposed to flesh out in my life? I get an answer to my question when I look at how Jesus interacts with the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus looks beyond the social barriers of His day to reach out to a woman who is a social outcast in every way. Jesus dignifies her by asking her for some water. He shows her (and the rest of us for that matter) that she has something to offer. She bears God's image in something as simple as being able to provide a drink of water to someone who is thirsty. By looking for the good things that a non-believer has to offer (the common grace of God) I am able to truly see God's image in that particular person. In so doing, I am then able to build a bridge on this foundation. The Syrophoenician woman's love for her daughter, and the centrurion's care for his servant and reputation among the people were bridges that Jesus used to bring the gospel to them. Each of them were bearing God's image in a particular way.
When do I give the law to someone and when do I give the gospel to another? This is another question that is addressed in this book. I have always thought of evangelism as sharing the good news of the gospel with the unbelievers of the world. After looking at how Jesus gives the law to some and the gospel to others I am beginning to see that it is necessary to understand the needs of the person. The religious upright people who are attempting to obtain their own righteousness are the ones who need to understand their own depravity and need for a savior before they will be receptive to the good news of the gospel. Those are the individuals who will need to hear more law in hopes that they will understand that they cannot fulfill the law. On the other hand, there are many who are completely aware of their brokenness and sin. These individuals will only be further condemned by the law, and are in desperate need of hearing the gospel of grace. When Jesus extended forgiveness to the sinful women who washed His feet with her tears, He was meeting her deepest need. On this very same occasion, when Jesus challenges the righteous man by asking him why he did not greet Jesus with a kiss or wash his feet, Jesus was meeting his deepest need as well.
When it comes to evangelism, I am often troubled by knowing what to say or when to say it. The great encouragement that I have received from this book is that Jesus is truly the greatest evangelist and the only one who is able to convert the hearts of men. The great hope that I have is that it is, therefore not up to me to change the hearts' of the unbelievers. I am to simply humble myself in obedience to God as a co-laborer with Jesus.
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Does that counter what I said earlier? Maybe. I go back and forth in my head I think. I am just ready to see how the Lord will work. I am not a very patient person I guess. It makes sense in my head though. I will be happy if the Lord blesses us with more children either way. Truly I am. And that is how my heart has changed. That wasn't the case a couple of months ago.
I heard someone say yesterday, "we want lots of kids..." And the Lord might bless them in that way. But, I remember having conversations with Michael years ago before having SK that I wanted 4 or maybe even more. I loved the idea of having lots of children running around and having them close together too. I'm not in charge though. I wanted to say, "good luck with that" or "We did too.." or "too bad you can't make that decision.." but I think I might have scared her a bit. Not necessarily something to say the first time you are meeting someone. At least I am honest on here right? I guess the worst that will happen on here is you may stop reading or think to yourself that girl has lost her mind or is crazy. Think that. It's true.
Well, SK is still singing away in her room, not napping. You would think after a rough night due to stuffy noses and swim lesson today, she would be ready to get a good nap in. Oh well. Maybe it will be a movie kind of afternoon till daddy gets home and takes us out for a date night with his girls :)
Friday, March 18, 2011
Night, Night y'all!
Thursday, March 17, 2011
It was fun to hang out and enjoy some nice weather! Now we are down for nap (hopefully sleeping and not playing...) Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Monday, March 14, 2011
Sunday, March 13, 2011
So I guess after yesterday's blog post, the Lord decided to use the sermon and small group time today to teach me a lesson. Isn't it funny how that happens? If you didn't catch yesterdays post I spoke of being offended by some certain people the last couple of days. I could go on and on about instances where I am just not used to the culture here. I will start with the fact that I know Southern culture is all kinds of messed up and is def. not the correct way, but neither is it in the midwest. They are all wrong and have their flaws. Moving on. The sermon today was about how we feel entitled to God's mercy and that we deserve it instead of it being what we desire knowing we are so undeserving. The scripture was Matthew 15:21-28 on the Canaanite woman who came to Jesus asking for healing for her daughter who was possessed. She knew she didn't deserve it, but had such faith. What could have been taken as offensive by being called a "dog" she accepted it knowing that is exactly what she was, but she believed that Christ was her only source of help and the only one who could really heal her daughter.
In our small group, we dealt with the questionf of "What offends us" and "What is the root cause of our being offended". I am offended by culture here and when it boils down to it, the root cause truly is my pride. People shouldn't talk of about me or my child. And, my self-righteousness. Do I put my righteousness in what others think of me and my family? So, I have the choice to live in offense or live in humility. What a blessing it could be to others around me to not have such an attitude of entitlement.
I am so thankful that the Lord is teaching me and showing me my sin. It's ugly. But, the more I see it the more I see how Great our God is and how big the cross in my life.
Saturday, March 12, 2011
Friday, March 11, 2011
First goes like this: SK gets to Molly's house (Michael brings her to me in the morning on the way to his class--on a side note, inst he a pretty awesome husband to get her ready every morning and to me while he has so much on his plate :)). She runs to the tv and wants to watch the "dinasour movie" also known as the "Dinasour Train" show that comes on PBS. I tell her that we will watch just a few minutes since I had planned a fun morning of heading over to Chick-fil-A for some play time and breakfast. After said amount of time, I go tell SK it is time to go and turn the tv off. Not what SK wanted at all. You would think enticing her with somewhere fun to go would make it ok that I am turning the tv off. Not so much. A 30 minute fit followed. She was placed in another bedroom to have her fit. Finally, deciding she was done and ready to tell me she was sorry.
Fit 2: We get all packed up after the fit then head to Chick-fil-A. She had a blast playing with some other girls there and we shared a biscuit and hashbrowns. She was really sweet, for that moment at least. Then, she said she was ready to go. So we packed up and got ready to head out. Then...she said she wanted icecream. I told her we weren't getting icecream this time (for one it was still 10:00 in the morning, a little early to feed icecream to a 2 year old right? and we don't get icecream everytime we go...that is the rule). She wasn't happy. So, I then have to drag this screaming 2 year old out of Chick-fil-A while carrying a diaper bag and baby in her carseat. We were quite the scene I am sure.
Oh my. Parenting is hard. On so many levels. It is hard at this age to really tell how much she understands when I have to talk to her about how she is acting. I know she probably understands more than she acts like she does. Sometimes she just looks at me like she doesn't get it. Then there is the times that she pitches a fit and screams then settles down and thinks that since she decided to stop screaming that she can then get what she wants. For instance, she wants gummies yesterday and I tell her not before dinner. She goes into her room pitches her fit for a good 5 minutes then comes out and says "Can my have my gummies now, mama?" Then is shocked when I say no again. We go through this cycle a good 5 times before she finally gives up and moves on.
I want her to know that I love her and am trying to do what is best for her. I am not just a bad guy. But, so many days I feel like I am just the bad guy in her eyes.
Now don't get me wrong, she isn't constantly testing me (some days are more than others like today). She can be so sweet many days and obedient. Today just wasn't one of those days.
On top of that, I was a bit down anyways, so that didn't help. I missed being able to call my girlfriends up and see if they wanted to meet us to play at Chick-fil-A. I am just dumpy today. Don't we all have those days? please say yes and I am not crazy. I am so happy here and know this is where God put us and where we are supposed to be, but it doesn't mean it is going to be an easy road.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
We love you Nana and hope you have an awesome birthday!! Sarah Kate said eat some cake for me ;) She loves you so much and will always hold a special place in her heart for her Nana!
Sunday, March 6, 2011
In Sunday School, we looked at Psalm 13. That is good stuff. God wants us to be real. With him and with each other. Look at David. Did he really believe that God had left him? No, but he was being honest with how he felt like he was alone. He was digging into the heart and trusting God with his feelings. So many times we find ourselves not going deep in relationships and not really sharing each other's burdens as we should. I know I am guilty of it. That is what we are called to do and that is what we find in Scripture over and over again. We have to be real with God if we want more than just a surface relationship. That goes with any relationship really.
I know for me, it is encouraging when I know I am not alone with hardships. When I can open up with others, like I have about our miscarriage and difficulty with infertility and have had other women share with me they have been there too. Does it make my pain easier? Some days yes and some days no. But, something about not being alone is encouraging. Feeling like I have other women who can stand beside me and say, I have walked that path and I know the pain and the emotions really does help.
So I guess that is my rambled thoughts for the night. I do want to thank those of you who have read this blog and shared with me how it might have encouraged you or shared with me that you have dealt with similar pains. If you haven't figured it out yet, my desire it to be real. I can't handle this alone. BUT, the good news is that I don't. I have Christ. That is enough. And I have the body of Christ here to encourage and point me to Christ, which the only way they know how to encourage me and pray for me is to know the truth of my heart. So, this is what you get, the messed up, crazy, emotional, jacked up, struggling to really trust and believe me.