Tuesday, January 25, 2011

French fries

Yes, you read the title correctly.
It was that one greasy french fry that caused me to forget where my mind was 
originally focused when I awoke this morning.  
See, some of you have been such an inspiration to me for so many different reasons.  
People like my friends at  
Psalm51ministeries,
who are participating in a 21 day corporate fast,
and my dear friend, 
 Rebecca, at Our Journey.
who spends 24/7 ministering to children far from her home and family. 
Then there is Amy at Building the Blocks
whose family is leaving to go into full-time mission work.
 Yesterday, one of those inspirations came from
Emma, at Emonamission,
as she wrote about the orphans that burdened her heart.  She was fasting and praying today for the God of heaven to pave the way for the adoptions of the least of these.  I chose to join her, to fast and pray and cry out to God for hearts to be softened for these precious babies. My focus had remained throughout the breakfast and lunch hours and up until my sweet Lia came into my classroom with that greasy french fry and ever so sweetly offered me one. I began to eat a couple before I ever remembered my focus for the day.  
As I thought about what had just happened, I realized just how quickly Satan can cause us to loose our focus on whatever God desires for us. It takes so little to cause our mind to forget whatever it is that we desire to do for the One who gave His life for us.  I could have said, "Oh well, my fast is blown and over now," or I could choose to set my eyes on Him again.  Really, no one else knew anyway and why did it matter?  It mattered because God knew and He and I are the very best of friends.  I wasn't doing it for me, my family, friends or anyone else but The One who truly mattered. So, I walked away from the fries and asked the Lord to be my strength in my weakness and to raise up people who will have a desire to provide a forever home to little girls like Lia's dear friend who LWB is advocating for today. 
I am so glad this little girl is finally on a list to possibly find her family.  Lia has asked me many times when I tell her it took us a long time to find her, "Why you take so long?"  I told her we were waiting for the call to go get her.  I have some sweet pictures of the two of them together and ask that you join me in praying for her family to hear the call.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Turning my frown upside down

After I spent the day grading papers, then fought the crowd at W*lmart, then came 
home to a washing machine that was started at 
7 am and was still running at 7 pm....
having a little funny face like this certainly brings a smile to my face!
If you can't tell, she liked dinner that her sister made tonight.  Yes, it came out of a box, but Tia made it all by herself while Justin and I tried to figure out how to turn off the water to the washer.  Thank you, Tia, YOU ARE THE BEST BIG SISTER! 
Fortunately, the washer was on an outside wall and drains under the house 
so the house wasn't flooded.
We've also had the pleasure of that experience many years ago and know how unpleasant it was!

 
She seems to know how to capture everyone's attention around here.
And just in case big brother isn't listening, she pulls out all of the punches, including 
the look and pointing finger, which typically gets her just about anything she wants.

Just in case any of you are considering adoption, but like me, think you are too old to adopt
because you have grown children,
take a look at these two faces, 18 years apart, and see the LOVE. 

(As I type this, the song, "God Gave Me You," by Dave Barnes is playing. How perfect!)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Overcomers

I honestly think this is what it means to "meditate" on the word of God...to really think about what it means and how it affects my life.  For some reason this word just stuck out to me this morning like never before as I was reading Revelation.  Yes, I'm behind and still trying to finish reading through the bible for 2010, but I'm still growing in the word, and 2010 was VERY BUSY!

To overcome?  

What does that really mean? 

 Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, 
because when he has stood the test,
he will receive the crown of life 
that God has promised to those who love him. James 1:12

After my friends posted this verse on their facebook page the other day, I thought about what joy we will have when we finally overcome and receive that promised crown of life.  Just like the song says, "I can only imagine!" Friends, my heart pounds a little faster at the thought of how beautiful we will all look wearing our crowns.

I don't know about you, but many times I don't feel like I am doing a very good job handling the daily struggles of life.  Struggles like finances, health, whiny kids, students who don't care, adult children(need I say more on that one!),  and the idea that so many are hurting and dying in this world without knowing the LOVE of God. So many struggles we face leave us with the feeling of frustration and the hurt of knowing there is sometime little that we can do about it other than pray without ceasing.  My heart is burdened for babies and children that go to bed every night and wake up every morning with no family to love them or kiss them when they cry.  I pray for friends dealing with cancer and lost loved ones, drugs and alcohol that are destroying families, friends living in a foreign country without family, and the hurt that accompanies this and so much more. 

So how do we keep on through the struggles and not give up?  How do we have the joy of the Lord when our hearts are breaking? How do we build others up when we are crumbling on the inside? The only answer is....
GOD,
and the knowledge of all we will be and have once we overcome

The following verses spoke volumes to me today as I realized all I have to look forward to once I "overcome" this world and all it has to dish out.  I hope you will read them and reflect on all you have to overcome in 2011(much of it you may not even know will come your way yet).  The world will fight against us, but fortunately we have ONE fighting those battles for us and 
we will be OVERCOMERS through HIM.

They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the LORD.  Jeremiah 1:18-19


To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. Rev. 2:6-8

He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death.  Rev. 2:10-12


To him who overcomes, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give him a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to him who receives it. Rev. 2:16-18

To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations—
Rev. 2:25-27


Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new name. Rev. 3:11-13


To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne.  Rev. 3:20-22

And the best one of all....
He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.  Rev. 21:6-8

Now, I'm going to overcome getting these Christmas decorations put away today if it get's the best of me or not.  What do you have to overcome?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year

With a new year we welcome new beginnings, new challenges and fortunately, His new mercies with each day.  As we wind down 2010 and begin 2011, I am looking forward to whatever God has in store for us this year.  In our family, there never seems to be a dull moment and we seem to be pretty used to that way of life.  Last year was one of the most challenging years our family has ever faced and also one of the most amazingly beautiful and memorable years.  We truly learned to appreciate each and every moment of life as we saw first hand the delicate nature of every breath we are given. I am so thankful to God that His plans are so much greater than ours and that we have had faithful friends to love and support us through the good times and difficult.  It is my prayer that each of you will have a blessed year and above all:


your FAITH will grow deeper
you will have HOPE for each tomorrow
and LOVE will embrace you on your journey.