Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Where's the fun?

Okay, so if you've read my blogs in the past, you will notice the focus has shifted. Fortunately, my bestie is also a blogger. She took a sabatical too, but she's back :-)

And since WE are besties, our girls have to be, too. Right? LOL

Check this out and you'll see some of the fun the girls have had lately.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Have You Stopped Listening?

I know my kids are probably the ONLY ones who do this (yeah right!) but it drives me crazy . . . I say their name to get their attention or I ask them very calmly and politely to do something. And they ignore me. Then I ask again - a little more loudly this time since they must have not been able to hear me the first time - and still no response. Then again and again until finally, I am having to yell to get their attention. It's SO FRUSTRATING!!! For those of you who have been reading my more recent posts, you will know God has been speaking to me and this is another thought He has given me lately:

If we get so frustrated with our children . . . why do we think it's okay to do the same thing to God?

I mean, if we are Christian, He is our Father. Right?

Recently, I attended the Oklahoma Ladies Retreat along with some other members of our women's ministry group. The theme of the weekend was Scouting the Divine which basically boiled down to this: let's get back to the basics and spend time with God in His Word. At one of the break-out sessions, the speaker gave us a "list" of the steps that take place "when we are shrinking back from God." This is a quote from the handout we were given (I've added scripture references in blue that God put on my heart):

Our woman's intuition [remember, I was at a ladies retreat but this pertains to us all LOL] should alert us to when we are shrinking back from God. These are some things that may start to take place:

1. We stop being in God's Word. (Psalm 119:11)

2. It starts to get easy to miss church here and there. Shows and teaches our kids it's alright to miss when it inconveniences our plans. (I Corinthians 12:27)

3. We start to justify missing church. ("We are too busy.", "We were just worn out.") (Hebrews 10:25)

4. We begin to not see sin as sin. (ie what see see on TV or hear on the radio)

5. We aren't bothered by the things that bother God. We become insensitive to that sin. (ie gossip) (Isaiah 29:13)

6. We ignore our conscience.

7. We begin to entertain thoughts that are contrary to God's will. (Isaiah 29:15-16)

8. We resist reproof. We don't want to hear it.

9. We make a habit of our sin.

10. We even start bragging about how we know it's wrong.

I don't know about you all but I think that #1 is the "easiest" trap to fall into. At this point, the Holy Spirit says our name trying to get our attention. Then #2 & #3 play together. And He has to call a little louder. From there, I believe this speaker listed things out well in the order that they normally happen. And the Voice gets a little louder each time. Sadly, we often make it so far into the list that the Holy Spirit literally has to scream to get our attention. So, why do we get so aggravated when our children do the same thing?

Father God, please make it obvious to me and anyone who is reading this post where in our lives we are falling into these traps. Father, please make us sensitive to Your Voice. Thank you for being our Loving Father - even when we don't deserve it.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


(ri-vahy-vuhl) - restoration to life, consciousness, vigor, strength, etc.

Beginning tomorrow, our church will be having "revival services." What does that mean? It means that we will have 5 services in which a guest evangelist and musician will come into our church and lead corporate worship. But by reading the above definition of revival, I think it's intended to mean so much more than that.

I know that for me, on a personal level, there are too many times that I allow my spiritual walk to become lifeless. I lose my motivation and strength to worship and praise God the way He desires me to. Sometimes, I even go through the motions of church so ritualistically that I'm not conscious of my actions.

What about as a church - a group of believers? How many times have churches become complacent in their Kingdom Work? How many times have they held revival services and they are just that - services? When is the last time you heard of a church experiencing true revival and not just having services?

My prayer for this week is that our church will be touched in such a way that the individual members open their hearts to what God has to say to us personally. I pray for the guests that will be coming into our meetings - that God will give them the right words to say. And I pray for myself - that my heart will be softened and that I will be willing to follow God's will. I am upset that I am in the middle of a big project at work and will not be able to be at the services, but I am at a point in my life that God has been speaking to me in powerful (and not always fun) ways. Don't think for one minute that just because I'm not going to be able to be at the meetings that I do not expect God to speak to me. What about you?

Father God, please begin at this moment softening the hearts of the poeple at Rancho Village Baptist Church and the surrounding community and prospective members. Bring the people to the services that you want to be there. Move in powerful ways. Bring true revival to your people. Please remind me to be seeking Your will, even though I won't be there for the meetings. Help me to avoid becoming complacent. Thank you God that you have great plans for your Kingdom . . .

Friday, May 13, 2011


"I've got joy down in my heart. Deep, deep down in my heart."

Remember that fun song we would sing at church camp, VBS, children's church and various other places? The thing that gets me is this : as adults, we so often lose our joy. Why is that? I mean, if something is "deep, deep down" it means we REALLY BELIEVE it, right? I think that for too many of us, we have forgotten where real joy comes from. Think with me for a minute. When was the last time you could say you experienced "JOY"? For some of you, it may take a really long time to think of a time you EVER had true joy. For others, it's simple.

The concept of joy has been on my mind for a couple of weeks now. But I really got to thinking about it a few days ago as I was driving Hannah to school. We have a "Night of Praise" coming soon at our church and have been listening to a CD of the music we will be doing that night. Hannah asked for a specific song to be played (it is one that the children's choir will be singing) and when it started, my heart swelled and I had tears of JOY in my eyes as she sang along with such conviction and innocence. The words? "Lord, I love you. You're the keeper of my heart, the healer of my soul. I give my life to you."

In Psalm 51:12, we read David's prayer and request for God to "Restore to me the joy of Your salvation." If you have come to a point in your life where you have asked God to forgive you of your sins, come into and take control of your life, you know what David meant. True JOY comes from God and from knowing Him.

So, why do we - even those of us who are Christians - lose our joy at times? Too often, we begin to focus on the world around us and ignoring God and His plans for us. We get so wrapped up in every day life that we forget that God wants to give us joy in even the little things. In Nehemiah 8:10, we are told "the joy of the Lord is your strength." Not only will we receive joy if we are seeking God but we will also regain strength. What more could we ask for?

The reason I've been thinking of joy for the last few weeks is this: while sitting and talking as a family preparing for Kathy's funeral service, Michelle mentioned a statement Kathy had written (I can't remember if it was in a journal or a personal note). She stated that through her pain, we were her joy. Even though she was dealing with struggles daily, she looked at the things God had given her and found JOY in them.

The next time you lose your joy - or if you currently are dealing with the struggle to find it - remember these things:

1) True JOY is found only in Jesus Christ
2) If you bury that JOY "deep, deep down" in your heart, it is more likely to take root.
3) Keep your eyes, ears and heart open to moments of JOY around you.

Father God, I pray that you will help me remember to see moments of joy. To not get caught up in every day life and forget to seek Your love. And for my family and friends - and anyone else who may have stumbled upon this post - please bring them comfort and joy. Help us all to see that no matter what we face in life, you want to be our JOY and our strength. Thank you for that promise and Your faithfulness . . .

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Thankfulness ... A Mother's Day Reflection

So, I've been quiet on here for some time now. Why? I mean . . . we have had plenty of fun times to tell you about. Since I last posted, we have had Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Valentines, Easter and several other "fun days" and memories made.

Well, the reason is this ~ God has been speaking to me in several ways. He is showing me things about myself, both good and bad. Some that I don't think I really wanted to know, LOL. And then there are things He teaches me that make me a better person ~ daughter, sister, wife, friend, employee and (today I especially think of it) Mommy. So, you will be seeing more entries from me. However, the entries may not be as "fun."

Today, on Mother's Day, I am reflective. And I am thankful.

First, I am thankful for my own mother. I am thankful that she gave me life but I'm even more thankful that she has brought me up to be the mother I am today. She has taught me how to care for my family and for others. She seems to be able to "do it all" and still be there for us no matter what. And when I say "us" I mean more than just me and my brother. I am including all of our friends that mom (and I guess dad helped some LOL) helped raise by opening our home to them. And all the children mom has taken care of while their parents were working. And then came my "little" brother and sisters who she grew in her heart and adopted. AND now, being a grandmother to my children. Even with all of this, she finds time to minister to others "where they are" ~ most recently by starting a Sunday School class specifically designed for the single moms in our church family.

Second, I am so thankful for the Mother-In-Love God gave me. Recently, He welcomed her home with Him and I am sad that our time together on Earth was cut short. But the 9 years I was able to have her in my life will never be forgotten. In all reality, I couldn't be there mother I am today without her as well. Her influence in my husband's life is evident as he helps me raise our children. And the legacy she has instilled in my children will never be forgotten. It has only been 13 days since she left us for her ultimate reward but not a single one has gone by that one or both of my girls have not said "MeMe taught me ..." (you fill in the blank - most of the time, it was something about Jesus and how He loves us or a Bible Story). She will forever hold a special place in my heart and I am grateful for her.

Finally, I am thankful for the opportunity I have to be a mother. I know that I am not a "perfect" mother but I strive daily to follow God's will in raising my children. This thankfulness includes being thankful for Superman (since it's been so long, I will remind you that this is my husband LOL). Because, let's face it - without him, I would not have my children! I cannot begin to tell you all the stories whether good or bad about the things my girls do or have done that have developed who I am as a mother. And I'm sure that those stories will keep on coming throughout life :-) But thank God that they will.

My prayer is ... God, please help me be the mother you created me to be. And thank you for the ladies in my life who have taught me how to be so.

For all of you out there who share the title with me . . .


Sorry for no pictures, but I'm not on my personal computer today.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Balloon Fest - Hannah's Eyes

It's amazing how different things look from the perspective of a 5 year old. On the first night we attended the actual Balloon Fiesta, it was so windy that they cancelled the festivities. Not knowing what to expect, we had arrived SUPER EARLY! Our first clue that it was too windy was that we saw kites flying everywhere on the field!

The girls didn't seem phased at all. They had a blast playing in the field. Hannah thinks she knows how to do cartwheels and was teaching the girls everything she knows. Check out this site for those pics!

The next morning was super early. As in, wake up at 3:30 and get ready, put the girls in the van (we had let them sleep in their clothes) and head out to the field. That morning was still windy but the balloons were able to inflate. This was awesome because it was the "special shapes rodeo" so there were lots of balloons of all different shapes - even some well known characters. Even though it was too windy for them to lift off, the girls had a blast seeing all the balloons.

Hannah got a great camera for her birthday and she used it for a lot of the trip but on this particular night, the batteries were dead. And then the next morning was SUPER early and her mommy (I guess that would be me) forgot to pick it up from where she had so carefully set it out so she would have it. When she asked to use my camera, I thought to myself "sure, why not?" I mean, Superman had HIS camera and I knew he would get the good pics so what would it hurt?

Here's what she saw . . .

Ronnie & Avery

Daddy & Chloe

Mommy & Chloe

Jen checking out the settings on her camera

Daddy being his goofy self

Self Portrait

All of the streets in the field had pretty cool names but this is the one we sat by :-)

Here goes the first balloon!

This cow was HUGE!!!

Next time, we'll see what I was able to catch!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Road Trip!!!

Here it is! The long awaited start of blogging about our recent family vacation!!! Many of you have already been following blogs by Superman and the bestie but here's my side. First, let me warn you that I don't have NEARLY as many pics as they do! And my side isn't as professional as theirs.

We started super early on a Wednesday morning. When I say super early, I mean we left the metro before 7:00. And when you're packing 2 families (4 adults, a 5 year old and two 2 year olds) into a rented minivan that is quite impressive!

Everyone knows that when you're headed out on the road, an important accessory is a cool pair of sunglasses. So, I was not surprised at all to see these divas with theirs. Thankfully, Avery had an extra pair because somehow, Chloe had forgotten hers in OKC! And poor Hannah . . . being the "big girl" she got stuck between the two carseats. But she was such a trooper - she only complained once (when we hit a bump and her head hit the side of Chloe's seat)! :-)

Our big stop for the day was at Groom, TX. Home of the 9 story cross. This was a great place to let the girls get some energy out - and a good photo op for Superman & Jen. Superman and I had visited this monument on our honeymoon 6 years ago but it was still very moving. I'm still amazed at the artistry as it takes you through Christ's final days on Earth. Thank God for His love and sacrifice!

After a LLLLOOOONNNNGGG day in the car, we finally arrived in Albuquerque, New Mexico!!! That evening we found some dinner and rest. The next morning took us to new heights - literally. We rode a cable-car tram to the top of Sandia Peak. It was absolutely breath-taking. And I caught very few pics of this. My 2 year old (gotta love her!) was in a "hold me" phase so I had very little time with a free hand. Fortunately for me, I'm married to a professional photographer!

Here, the girls are taking time out for a snack. Jen and I sat with them while Superman and R went exploring.

And here is proof that Superman truly is a professional. He actually has the photo he was taking posted in his blog of the trip.

And I'm nearly positive Hannah's going to follow in her daddy's footsteps. In my next post, you'll see the first event of the Balloon Fiesta we attended through the eyes of a 5 year old.

This camera she was given for her 5th birthday and the child is getting really good!

We actually got to do a little exploring. Chloe was obsessed with picking up rocks. I think Superman was on the lookout for the next great picture.

And you can't tell here, but Chloe put a couple of holes in the bottom of her pants. While daddy was taking a pic of her and Hannah sitting on a rock, she decided it would be a fun slide . . . 2 year olds! Gotta love 'em. Right?!

Anyhow, that was the 1st 36 hours. Next time, you'll get to see Hannah's perspective!