Airing the dirty laundry

Has God ever prompted you to do something and you whispered back at Him {in your head of course, because out loud would make you seem crazy} "come again?  Lord, there is no way I can do that"? Oh, it's just me? Usually when I have that type of conversation with God, it isn't long before I acquiesce.  Such was the case this weekend. Our area was hit by a terrible storm that no one was expecting.  We have friends who had trees fall on their homes, people injured from falling tree limbs and debris, closed roads and thousands without electricity.  To top it off, it was over 100 degrees this weekend. I was so thankful that we had power {heat and Melissa do NOT mix}.  Saturday morning, God prompted me to invite {via facebook and texts to friends} those without power to come over to our … [Read more...]

For those kind of days….

Sometimes life is no fun. Not particularly tragic compared to other things you have been through or watched others endure. Not anything specific that you can change or control. Just tough, with the days that blend into the next and you feel like you are spinning around and accomplishing nothing and wonder if there will ever be enough hours in one day... Am I the only one that has those kind of days? It is those kinds of days that marking the good matters the most. Gratitude can make the difference between a tough day and an unbearable day. And, the counting of gifts continues {excerpted from my gratitude and Joy Dare journal} ~ reading of hell and feeling a renewed desire to share my Jesus with the lost ~ the lime at the bottom of my empty glass {yes I take it out and eat it :} ~ … [Read more...]

What is ministry?

We don't go into ministry, it's who we are. ~Amy Bayliss I used to think that ministry was comprised of those things I did for Jesus.  Working with teen moms, holding leadership roles at my local church, serving dinner at the local soup kitchen or registering people at the local free clinic. When I had the privilege of working with Young Lives for 2 1/2 years, my view of ministry evolved and changed. Don't get me wrong, I grew in many ways. But, ultimately I allowed ministry to become an idol in my life.  The doing had become more important then the being. When we cease to dwell in the presence of Jesus, to bask in His goodness and step nowhere without His peace accompanying us, we have made ministry about us and not Him.  And, that is never a good thing. Ministry {or what I defined as … [Read more...]

The Joy of Family

Our family is comprised of more than just blood relatives. Most of our children are related to only one of us {or neither of us} by blood, yet my heart birthed love for them as strong as the love knit in my womb. God weaves together families in beautiful and unexpected patterns. Sweet Pea had her first gymnastics class on Saturday.  It's called Gyminy Crickets {how stinkin' cute is that?} Every Saturday in March, she gets to tumble and play with her mama and daddy, while Mimi {that's me} watches from the observation window. My heart was so touched for her.  A generational curse was broken when God brought her mama to us and she is being raised in an entirely different environment than Shayla was.  She won't know neglect and she won't wonder who is going to take care of her from day to … [Read more...]

Exciting things are happening!

Can I just tell y'all that God is amazing? Sometimes I am tempted to throw in the proverbial towel with this whole writing/teaching thing, especially when I start listening to the lies of the devil.  And then God will show up in a sweet and powerful way {or two or three} and remind me that I am doing what He has asked and that my only calling is to obedience. This week, He affirmed that in my Bible reading.  For those of you that don't know, I chose to do the chronological Bible reading plan this year in my personal quiet time.  I was reading in Exodus when God is calling Moses to go deliver His people from Egypt.  Just read this little exchange between Moses and the Lord: But Moses pleaded with the Lord, "O Lord, I'm not very good with words.  I never have been, and I'm not now, even … [Read more...]

That’s What Love is for

I braid the rope together. It may seem like a peculiar birthday gift but to an 11 year old with down syndrome it will be well received. "string" as he knows it brings comfort and calm to a world that is often overstimulating and overwhelming. Lupus shoots fiery darts of inflammation and pain into the joints of my hands as I braid, but I don't stop. Love hurts sometimes and this is a gift infused with love. This special little guy is the brother to my daughter. Only God, through His Love, could bring me the daughter I prayed for AND provide a sweet boy with a special chromosome for me to love too. {You know if you have spent any time here before that children with special needs have their own place in my heart} God injects unexpected joys into our lives, if we are open to seeing … [Read more...]

From clutter to clarity

I wrote about clutter and how to identify (and avoid) it. Oft lately, my mind and heart ponder a different type of clutter. The clutter of busyness.  The clutter of doing.  The clutter that accumulates when you are not weeding out the good to make room for God's best. Isn't it funny how we can be the worst at taking the advice we so freely give? When life is hectic and the soul is parched, Living Water is the only thirst quencher. Today I am thankful for the clarity and comfort that comes from spending time in the Word and with the Author. and the counting of gifts continues... {excerpts from my Joy Dare/gratitude journal} ~ an impromptu dinner with just my youngest ~  transitioning Sweet Pea to the sippy cup ~  dark denim boot cut jeans {that fit} ~  first words in a new … [Read more...]

I am…

I am….. a child of the Most High King. I want….. to wake up with no pain, just one morning. I have….. to laugh at the antics of my teenagers so I don't scream. I wish….. we had a maid. I hate….. injustice. I miss….. my kids being little. I fear….. losing my husband. I feel….. content with my blessed life. I hear….. my fur baby jumping up and down in her crate. I smell….. fresh coffee brewing. I crave….. quiet, still moments with God. I search….. for good books. I wonder….. what God has in store for our lives this year. I regret….. that I didn't take better care of myself last year and vow to be different this year. I love….. to curl up with a good book and a mug of hot tea. I ache….. when I see children that don't have families. I care….. less and less what others think and more and more … [Read more...]

Quality Time

The hubby and I are back from celebrating my birthday weekend in one of my favorite cities, Baltimore. I am a Maryland girl and few things make me happier than the Chesapeake Bay We spent an afternoon at the Baltimore Museum of Art {one of the top ten museums in the country!}. I could go there a million times and not be bored.  Then we had a fabulous dinner {broiled scallops with crab imperial} at Phillip's {a well known seafood restaurant in Maryland}. The restaurant has relocated to the old power plant and the ambiance is neat.  Tin ceiling tiles and the like. Then we perused the bookstore {another of my favorite things to do}.  I bought the latest Jodi Picoult novel with my gift card. We got dessert to go here Need I say more? Then joined my grandparents for a birthday brunch at … [Read more...]

What lies beneath

Emotions are raw. Tears threaten to spill over. Good bye is never easy, even if it is a perfectly normal part of life.   Shayla leaves for nursing school tomorrow {her first plane ride} and Jason leaves for basic training on Monday.   As my pastor's wife {and good friend} pointed out on Sunday, a mama is supposed to space these traumatic events out a tad better. As I have been journaling and praying through this difficult week, I noted that I am taking these harder than many moms do. I begged God to ask me why I was filled with so much fear surrounding the departure of my two precious kids.  Sadness I understand.  Apprehension even.  But terror is not from God. Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. ~Psalm 139:23 Through a … [Read more...]

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