Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Sunday before Christmas

How about those cute boots!!

Well, it is the Sunday before Christmas and I am staying with my mom who had her fifth chemo treatment Friday. My family just stopped by in their Christmas best - they are beautiful.

As I am sitting here reflecting on how much my life has changed during the past year, it is mindbloggling. The most changes, however, have occurred with Bailey. We almost wear the same size (I did lose about 15 pounds this year!!...and she found them - mostly in her boobs!!!). We wear the same size shoes now and at first, I didn't handle it too well when every time I looked down (or went to look for MY shoes) there they were... on her feet. I would be furious, but as of late, I have decided to embrace this time and enjoy it - share my shoes, my sweaters, MY PANTYHOSE that she can only wear ONCE without ripping. I have to learn to enjoy my teenager. When I do, things are so much better. And really, how much do pantyhose really cost?

And Alec....ohhhhhh Alec. He became a middle schooler this year. And for a twelve year old with autism who look about 9, middle school has been a challenge. A challenge just as he is a challenge. As you see in the pictures, he is NOT a picture taker. I've learned I can get frustrated or I can except MY "normal" and take what I can get and enjoy the good smile even all the more.

How about that smile!!!!!!!!!!!

Rusty and I have been married 16 years as of the 18th, and I have never loved him more. We have truly become a team. Being in the ministry...and Alec...and Bailey being a teenager have caused us to grow closer. It is either join forces or be defeated - lol. I'm glad we have chosen to join forces.

They look so innocent don't they???? !!!!!

And Mom...I've NEVER appreciated her more and I am thankful for the time to care for her. She only has one chemo left, and my hearts desire is for it to be the Lord's will for this to be over. I have seen the hand of God so much during this time and I know He will be faithful no matter when this journey takes us.
Merry Christmas from my normal to yours!!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Romans 7:14-15

14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. 15For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.

Why is that??

This verse sums up where I have been these last couple of weeks. Doing what I KNOW I shouldn't and not doing what I should. And believe me, I am reaping what I am sowing. I know the importance of my morning quiet time; I know the importance of reading God's Word; I know the importance of my prayer journal, but yet night after night I stay up too late watching T.V.
Why do I care so much about The Biggest Loser

and NCIS???? (Even though Gibbs and Tony are precious!!!!)

I'll tell you why - MY FLESH and SINFULLNESS!!!!!!

Lord, help me not to just realize my sinful choices, help me to change. Help me to remember how it feels to be close to you. Help me remember the importance of my personal relationship with you. Help me remember how much I need Your strength to handle Alec...Bailey...the mornings. Forgive me for doing what I shouldn't and not doing what I should.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

1 Corinthians 13 applied to Christmas


By an unknown author

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love, I’m just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love, I’m just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir’s cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the husband.Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn’t envy another’s home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn’t yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love doesn’t give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can’t.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust, but giving the gift of love will endure.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

My prayer jouranl

God never ceases to amaze me. For the longest time, I have always written my prayers - mostly in a list fashion. But in the last couple of weeks, the Lord has allowed me to read two books that have completely changed my perspective on a "prayer journal." The first began in a Christian fiction book, The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers. In the story, the main character is reading a distant relatives journal - her heartaches, concerns, her coming to Christ, etc., and throughout the story you see how the two lives parallel as well as see the hand of God in this woman's life. It got me to thinking how much I would love my kids, my grand kids, to read about MY walk with Christ - the good, the bad, and the ugly and the hand of God in it all. I want my kids to know how much I prayed for them. I want them to know that God was with me even through the tough times. I want them to know that I relied on Christ every single day. I want them to understand God's grace and mercy and to see it in my life as an example.

Once I had made a decision to begin a "real" journal, the Lord allowed me to come across another book about making my home a safe haven. And guess what?? The first chapter was on the importance of time alone with God, a devotional time, and guess again what she strongly recommended?? Writing your prayers as a letter to a prayer journal!!!

I have been faithful for the past three days and put my own little twist to it. I write as if I am truly talking to God. I share my heart just as I would be talking to him. Then I open my Bible and begin reading. I as I read certain scriptures that speak to my heart, I write them in the form of a prayer asking God to make them real in my life. For instance, as I read Philippians 4 yesterday (which quite possibly may be my favorite chapter in the entire Bible - it is so chocked full of good stuff!!), I wrote, "Help me Lord to rejoice always (vs. 4);
Help me to be anxious for nothing (vs. 6);
Help me know the peace of God that surpasses all understanding (vs. 7);

Make my thoughts be of things that are noble, and pure and true, and lovely, and worthy of praise (vs. 8); help me to be content wherever You have me (vs. 11);

and help me to remember that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (vs. 13);
and that you will ALWAYS supply my needs according to Your riches in glory (vs. 19).

Those scriptures have never seemed so real to me. Thank you God for godly women who write and encourage other women like me - through fiction, Bible studies, etc. And help me to be one of those women as well!!!