Sunday, February 24, 2013

Human

The past few months have been a breakthrough for me. God has worked in my life in ways I never expected, and through circumstances I'd never think possible. I've realized just how human I truly am, realized just how much I truly need God. I am a falling apart, imperfect mess at the feet of a perfect Jesus who loves me anyway! Without Him I would have no meaning in my life and who knows where I would be today.

Human. Sinful by nature. Imperfect to a fault. Loved unconditionally by God Above. Praise God for His mercy and forgiveness.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

New Blog

I'm not done with this blog, but I am starting a new blog over here, check it out.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Feeling God's Spirit...

 
Well I wrote this post back in October, how God was stirring in my heart. November crept by, December my heart was troubled, burdened....and here comes January....and the heart of myself and my husband are both being stirred...we still don't know why, or what God has in store but He's setting the stage for something....

I started reading a new book called "7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess" by Jen Hatmaker. I wasn't sure exactly what to expect but it's kind of like a wooden spoon being used to stir a pot of boiling water, it is truly speaking to my heart. It's helping me put things, life in perspective. I am thinking again of how many hurting people there are outside the walls of my home, in my city, my state, my country and the world. I can't minimize the worlds problems and say that I can do NOTHING for those in need, who are hurting, who are poor and in poverty, who are hundreds of thousands of miles away from my front door.....because the truth is, I CAN do something.

I know a God who is so powerful, a God who can change everything, and be sufficient in all circumstances, and who am I to withold him from others? Refrain from sharing Him with those who need Him? We have a sweet Jesus who we have the freedom to worship and there are people all around who not only do not KNOW my Jesus, and my God but don't have the same freedoms we do in America to serve Him, pray to Him, read His words....

I know this post today is really not resolving anything, just confirming something I've known for months...God is working and moving in my life, now that I know that for a fact I am so ready to find out what He has in store for me!!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Test

Test the app for my iPhone

What Drives You?

It's three days after Christmas, kids are napping, I'm away from home (with family), sitting quietly in a recliner and my mind starts wandering....my mind speeds through thousands of thoughts a day, and I'm sure that some don't appreciate that probably half of the thoughts/ideas/ramblings that cross my mind come out of my mouth. Tonight, they come out through my fingertips!

Today I kept thinking of a phrase that I hear so many people, including myself, say so often. I was pondering the phrase: "But what do they think?" Whatever order the words are in, it all means the same. "What do they think, what will they think, I wonder what they think...." I started thinking about some of the things I do in my life, maybe things I do because I wonder "what people would think" if I didn't do them.

I thought about the Christmas cards I decided not to send out this year *gasp*, what do people think?! Then I moved to the reason that I stopped sending cards is because my list has grown to a ridiculous 200+ names and I just can't figure out how to narrow it down. "What would they think" if I didn't send them a card this year and they found out I did send them out? Then I thought about my cluttered house..."what would they think" if they knew I really needed to purge/sell this item, I don't want to hurt their feelings because they gave it to me?. I then thought about my house "what would they [insert someone's name here] think" if they came to my dirty, undecorated home.......what would they think.....

I heard a few other people the past several days, over Christmas with family, saying phrases like that too, and it just made me wonder. How many of us are DRIVEN to do things because we are concerned about what "THEY" think of us.....and then I asked myself, does it even matter what they think of us?

Here's where my mind landed, although it's easier said than done. When it all boils down to it, it doesn't matter what anyone thinks of you but our Lord and Savior. We should be driven by the desire to please Him, and to follow His will. So it doesn't matter what people think of your job/calling in life, it only matters what HE thinks about it. It doesn't matter if your job/calling isn't popular, or is different from what most people recognize as normal. It also doesn't matter what people think of how you raise your children, or discipline your children, and it doesn't matter what people think about the things you make a priority in your life, and the things you choose to exclude due to your personal family decisions. If you are truly living your life obedient to the Lord, and following His commands, and pleasing HIM then it truly only matters what HE thinks of you, it doesn't matter what "they" think of you.....

I hope and pray I am not driven by what others think of me in life but what the Lord thinks of me, and judges me to be in life so that in death I may honor him....

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Broken and Lost

God has been working on my heart, I don't know what he is saying, what he is doing or what He has planned, but he is moving in my heart. He's opening my eyes to so many things in the life of those around me, and even those beyond my reach.

I'm constantly being reminded of the pain in this world, the cancer, the sickness, the people who are hurt physically, and the words that we think should be easy to "roll of our shoulders" yet linger and sear our hearts....

There's some things we never think of, like the fact that you are reading this on a computer (or phone), most likely a device you own, probably sitting in an air conditioned/heated home, with running water, and food in your fridge, at least one vehicle to your families name, maybe some chagne in the console, clothes in your closet, shoes to wear....most likely a few pairs that are "cute" and not just "practicial" like tennis shoes.

Let's take that to the flip side. There are people all over the world that live in homes with NO electricity, no heater or air conditioner, no running water, no fridge for food, very little or no food to their name, have never seen a vehicle let alone ridden in one or owned one, no money to their name, maybe not even one pair of shoes to their name.....

I stay home with my kids, and while that is an important job (one of the most important jobs) there is a world of pain, hurt and need outside my front door...a world that is so easy to forget when it's not a part of our daily lives. While I'm complaining about washing my dishes off so I can put them in the dishwasher there is a mother in another country serving her family on rocks for dishes, or maybe eating out of a community pot of stew. While I'm complaining about my piles of laundry there is a mother out there washing her kids one pair of clothes in a river, or a lake, or maybe a puddle.  When I open my fridge and pantry complain that I have "no food" to eat as I scan the unappealing items I have remaining there is a mom searching desperately for something to feed her children, because they haven't eaten in 4 days. We complain of gas prices while some people walk barefoot every single place they go, we complain about a busy schedule filled with technically non-essential events that fill our calander, while there are people whose children do not even receive an education.

God is moving my heart. Sure, I know that I still say things or do things that show my selfish nature but my eyes are being opened much more to the fact that there is a broken and lost world outside my front door, some of those broken and lost people may be neighbors, or friends, or family, or people I see in passing, some of those broken and lost people are all the way across the world, in countries I've never been in, places I could never imagine, and situations that would bring me to tears.

I pray the Lord keep moving in my heart, continue to open my eyes to the broken and lost world I'm in, and help me remember what's truly important...........

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Broken Cisterns


Tonight I know that God is who He says He is (Exodus 3:14) and He deserves that title, he has earned that title, that position (Obadiah 3-4). I need to constantly remind myself that I live for Him, and to bring HIM glory is greater than anything else. I don’t want to trade that approval of God for the approval of man (Jeremiah 2:11). I don’t want to chase after a worthless idol, by making the opinion of man more than the opinion of my God and what He not only thinks about me but says about me. I know that the Lord is Living Water (John 4:10), and when I choose a worthless idol rather than Him I am creating for myself a small, limited and broken “cistern” (Jeremiah 2:13) that I am trying to fill in order to be refreshed…but from the very beginning I am setting myself up for failure. The cistern that I have “created” (my cistern of approval for instance) is already broken to start with, and the pieces would never fit together right to hold my “water” (refreshment, approval)….and the second issue is that I am trying to fill my cistern with “stale” water instead of God’s living water. I am trying to cling to broken promises of others, the need of approval from others, or the desire of respect from others……and yet all along MY GOD promises to constantly refresh me with Himself, the living water………

....and in knowing all of this I can begin to truly know who I am.....because when I start by defining myself, by knowing WHO defines me (Christ)...then I am being refreshed from the Living Water who never fails rather than thinking I am defined by the stale water and broken promises of others in my life.....

.....I am defined by CHRIST.....and I will no longer drink from the stale water of a broken cistern I have created but will be truly refreshed by the Living Water of the one who created me..........

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Genderless Baby??

I ran across this article after seeing a friends comment pop up on Facebook. It is titled "He, she or it? Family keeps baby's gender a secret". This simply infuriates me.

The parents say

What we noticed is that parents make so many choices for their children. It’s obnoxious,” Stocker told the paper. He and his wife allow Jazz and Kio to choose their clothing from both the boys' and girls' departments – including pink dresses - and how they want to wear their hair
Parents make choices for their children? What about the GOD that created these children? He created a specific gender for this child, and it plays a part in the role of who each of us are! We were fearfully and wonderfully made. This is not something that a parent "pushes" on their children, this is simply the way they were created, end of story.

If I weren't so sick right now I would keep on going but I"m too tired to type any more!!! Lord, I pray for this country!!

Life from a 5 year old

I don't think I even need to go on about this blog post, just read the quote and enough is said.
"Sometimes, life isn't like you want it.." LK (5 yrs)
My amazing, wonderful, caring, smart, loving son LK.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Claustrophobic...in a dress....

I told my friend MM I would never tell this story, and HERE I lay on the sofa typing my embarrassing story of terror......

MM and I take an annual shopping trip, each being a mother of three kids we don't go shopping much, it's too hard to try on clothes, match the shoes, find the jewelry....so we just save it all up and go at once, together, abandoning our husbands with the kids. They don't question it anymore, it's what "sisters" do.

MM and I don't live up the road from each other like we used to, so I drove to her house Fri night so we could wake up early Sat morning and start our fun filled, girl day.....I think we're going to throw in a little Mimi's for lunch, and PF Chang for dinner....and maybe a mani-pedi too.......

SO ANYWAY, here we are in Target, piling the clothes in our cart...."oh this is cute, no this one, hey that's my size" (you can obviously tell we haven't shopped since our last annual shopping trip). I find the cutest dress. Khaki colored, tailored style, with a brown belt....oh I'll have to post a picture. Now let me say, my body size right now is the biggest it's been on any shopping trip to date (we skipped our pregnant years, and we've always been pregnant at the same time. all three of her kids were born within a couple of months of all three of my kids).

So I go into the dressing room and slip into this super cute dress. It was "snug" but I was able to tug it over me and fit in fairly easy. I zip it up and LOVE it right away. But this isn't the right size, it is not very unforgiving of my tummy area, so after I show it off to her and we agree I need to try on a size larger I go to unzip the dress, unzipped it until it stopped and try to take the dress off.

Suddenly I felt claustrophobic, in a dress!!!! I could NOT get the dress off! I tried pulling it over my head, and I tried stepping out of it and it would not BUDGE. I was stuck.  I was trying to remain calm but I just couldn't "I am STUCK" I hollered to MM across the dressing room (she was in the one across from me). She laughed "you can't be stuck". I yelled back "Oh yes I can, and I AM stuck...." At this point I hyperventilate, I literally start envisioning myself having to borrow scissors from a Target employee and CUT myself out.....

So MM comes over to help me, all to find out that I hadn't unzipped the dress all the way......really? What? Yes. When I THOUGHT I had unzipped the zipper it had hit a snag and I thought I'd finished....I was so claustrophobic in that dress, it wasn't funny at the time...but it sure is now.

I do have to ask, why do ALL the embarrassing things happen to ME and never to MM?! I will spare the other embarrassing stories that she and I share....this one is good enough for now....

Friday, May 20, 2011

Stay at Home Moms....or rather Work at Home Moms....

A man came home from work and found his three children outside, still in their pajamas, playing in the mud, with empty food boxes and wrappers strewn all around the front yard. The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house and there was no sign of the dog. Proceeding into the entry, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, and the throw rug was wadded against one wall. In the front room the TV was loudly blaring a Cartoon channel, and the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing. In the kitchen, dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled on the counter, the fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door. He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she might be ill, or that something serious had happened. He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door. As he peered inside he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and walls. As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel. She looked up at him, smiled, and asked how his day went. He looked at her bewildered and asked, 'What happened here today?' She again smiled and answered, 'You know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what in the world do I do all day?' 'Yes,' was his incredulous reply. She answered, 'Well, today I didn't do it.
This was not written by me, and the author is unknown. Enjoy and laugh

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Saving money, it CAN be fun...

Well I'm a couponer. Yes, and I love it. I'm not one of those extreme couponers like you see on TV, but I do make small stockpiles, and have fun doing it.  There is nothing like going to the register, seeing your total, having them scan the coupons and then paying for only about half of what I started with.

Like yesterday I went to Walgreens, and paid $3.86 (before tax) for 4 boxes of kleenex, 2 bottles of body was (for a man), 2 bottles of body wash (for a woman), a package of bars of soap, and several packages of starbursts. I spent $3.86 and saved $36.84. You can't help but get excited when you see that at the register.

I'm finally getting to the point that I may not have to even grocery shop now except for a few random items, like produce, milke, and on occasion some more meat (although I do use coupons on my meat too)

Before I couponed I was barely scraping by on our grocery budget. I'd fill it up and still feel like I didn't have much in the kitchen especially, for food. Now I've been spending the same amount (I'm new at this, later you don't spend hardly anything) BUT I am getting TONS of food, and items. I don't need to go shopping now. Like next payday (when I usually run to the store) I'm thinking I'll just need fruit and milk again. Maybe a couple items. Hopefully I will start taking out less grocery money. That savings can go elsewhere.

My friend is awesome at this, and really teaches you to coupon. I'm so new I"m not good at explaining it but go visit her blog over at Frugal Family Life. She's my sweet friend and does an awesome job teaching, explaining and doing all the hard work!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Growing Up (Princess)

I love watching my kids grow up, right now I wanted to talk about Princess. Oh she is getting SO big. She will answer your questions (yes or no). She will take my hand and lead to me the pantry to show me what snacks she wants. She giggles and talks. She brushes her hair. She tries to sit on her little potty. She picks out her shoes. And she sings!

Today was so cute, Ruru and I were singing "Jesus Love Me" to her and she was "singing". She wasn't singing the right words but she sure was trying. Making little noises and tunes that were very similar. In fact we've caught her singing the right rhythm to the church bells we hear ringing in the distance, and things like that. I do believe she will be musically inclined.

Princess will be our last little one, so while I'm so happy to see her grow up it also saddens me to know I'm done with baby beds, bottles, and burp rags forever......

Friday, May 13, 2011

Thankul

Today is one of those days. A weird feeling day where I am not happy or sad, I just feel off. So I thought that's a good day to make a list of SOME of the things I am thankful for in my life.

  • My husband- I am so lucky to have the wonderful husband that I do. He loves me inside and out, and I can tell you I can be a tough person to love sometimes. I think he understands me better than I understand myself and has the patience to deal with me! LOL. I'm so lucky that he is a hard worker and a helper. Not only does he work hard to provie for the family but he helps me at home when I need help too. He'll help with laundry if I'm behind, or with dishes, and he is always more than willing to watch the kids.
  • Little King (5yrs)- I am so thankful to have LK as my son. He is such a thoughtful little boy, already growing into a leader. He has his convictions and stands strong with those convictions, usually even when challenged by someone else. He is truly thoughtful and very good at thinking of other people, remembering little details some people forget.
  • Little Wiseman (3yrs)- I am so thankful to call LW my son, what a compassionate soul he has. Truly loving to others, and hurts when they hurt. He is so tender hearted. He's so full of life and spunk. I know he is going to be hurt many times in his life (because of his tender heart) and that hurts my heart.
  • Princess- I am so thankful to have such a fun little girl. She's too young to say much about other than I love watching her grow up. She is walking, almost running now. She says "thank you" when you give her things and on her own she is starting to tell us she loves us, by saying "I love you" and/or by giving us kisses and hugs at her own choosing.
I'm thankful for so much more, but today I guess I'll stop here. I'm going to love on my kiddos.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My Video Testimony

video
Please let me know if you have any questions!

Wordless Wednesday

Truly, no words needed here


Visit 5 Minutes for Mom: Wordless Wednesday and link up your photo


Invisible Mom

**A few days late for Mothers Day, to all the moms....***

Invisible Mom
By Author Unknown

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the
lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while
I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store.

Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the
phone?' Obviously not; no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking,
or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner,

because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom.
Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more:
Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this?
Some days I'm not a pair of hands;
I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?'
I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car
to order, 'Right around 5:30, please.'

I was certain that these were the hands that once
held books and the eyes that studied history and the
mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had
disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's
going, she's going, she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the
return of a friend from England . Janice had just gotten back from a
fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was
sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well.

It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my
out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean.
My unwashed hair was pulled up in a hair clip and I was afraid I could
actually smell peanut butter in it. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when

Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought
you this.' It was a book on the great
cathedrals of Europe .

I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her
inscription: 'To Charlotte , with admiration for the
greatness of what you are building when no one sees.'

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the
book. And I would discover what would
become for me, four life-changing
truths, after which I could pattern my
work:

No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record
of their names. These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would
never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the
eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man

who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw
a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and
asked the man, 'Why are you spending so much time carving that bird
into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.'

And the workman replied, 'Because God sees.'
I closed the book, feeling the
missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering
to me, 'I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day,

even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no
sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to
notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't
see right now what it will become.'

At times, my invisibility feels like an
affliction . But it is not a disease that is erasing my life.
It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the
antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I

see myself as a great builder. As one of the people
who show up at a job that they will never see
finished, to work on something that their name will
never be on.

The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever
be built in our lifetime, because there are so few people willing to
sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't
want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for
Thanksgiving, 'My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade
pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all
the linens for the table.' That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument
to myself.

I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there
is anything more to say to his friend, to add, 'You're gonna love it
there.'

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We
cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very
possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at
the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of
invisible women.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Home

I received this ebook FREE last month, from Sarah Mae (it's only $4.99 to download to your computer now). It's called "31 Days to Clean: Having a Martha House the Mary Way". I was just a few chapters in and it was so inspiring I cleaned my entire house?! What? I haven't even finished the book yet!!

She talks about one way to clean our house and keep it clean is to "claim" WHY we want a clean house. Not because of what others think, but why is it important to ME to have a clean house. I think of my kids mostly, I want the best environment I can provide for them, that is my WHY....for my children.

Chapter two she blew me away, telling me that we as women were created to be a "life-giver". What does THAT have to do with having a clean house? She defines "live-giving" as "in its most basic sense, is raising life above the level of mere existence"

Then she talks about making our house where people are welcome,a  place where they can "put their feet up". She asks us to think about what it's like when WE go to others peoples houses, then asks you what you want YOUR house to be when people come visit. Well of course, I want a place that welcomes my friends.....

....and that my friends is all it took. I have book my book (or Kindle rather) aside and cleaned, and cleaned. My house is pretty clean, it smells nice thanks to my sister-in-law's Scentsy. Sure, I still need to vacuum a few rooms, and mop but all my clutter is put away except my bedroom and I'm tackling that tonight.  I am even caught up on laundry, and have it all folded, and I'll get that put away tonight or tomorrow.

Already I know what Sarah Mae meant when she talked about having a "life giving" home, because today as I was home with a sick LW I was able to spend quality time with Princess playing! We colored, and we played play-doh, and we played catch, and played toys....I enjoyed extra snuggles, and cuddles, we danced in the kitchen to our favorite music.......all things I would overlook if I was drowning in my messy, cluttered house.

My house isn't alwasy messy but it seems like when I do let it get that way, I just get in a rut and have trouble getting back out, and it feels SO nice to be home right now.....and with that, I'm off to go switch out my last load of laundry and start to tackle my room.....and I will finish reading the book by Sarah Mae, because she has some wonderful tips, and other suggestions for cleaning that I haven't tackled yet (like the fridge)......but I highly suggest her book, and it's only $4.99 to download right now.

Gas Prices are Stupid!

Gas prices are outrageous here! It costs me $90 to fill up my van, and right now while LK is in PreK I have to fill my tank up once a week. That's $360/mo on gas alone. [Good thing I'm learning to coupon so I can cut grocery prices].  I know this dates me but I remember in HS when gas prices were around $1/gal. Why can't it just be like that again. Why does everything have to get so expensive?

One reason we burn through the gas is because LK's school is a 25 min drive one way, twice a day. Talk about miles on the van, and gas being used. In fact I keep having to remind myself that God provides, espcially when we obey Him. The reason he goes to the private school is because that's where we felt God was asking us to take Him. I can't explain it, because unless you have God telling YOU something directly to do it never makes as much sense to someone else (especially so when we're paying the gas).

When we were deciding what to do about LK's school we just kept praying and praying, and we were not finding peace regarding his education. For many reasons. School class sizes in local public schools, and some issues that LK has that make it difficult for him to adjust, and adapt and we didn't know how that would be handled. Not to mention the the fact that we are raising our children to be followers of Christ and that seems difficult if I send them to a public school, for 7 hours or so, a place that continually takes God out of their place, and even forbids it to an extent. [Just for the record I went to a public school, my husband went to a private school].

And so we pursued the closest private school, and were told we couldn't wait until Kindergarten if we wanted in. So that day I dropped everything, drove there and filled out the application.  Now I must tell you that the day we got the call we were accepted to the school, we still didn't know how we were going to pay for it....but two days, no kidding, TWO DAYS after we were accepted God provided a very clear way for the tuition for that half of the year.

So now I keep worrying about gas prices, and I keep worrying about how we are going to pay for this...but then I ask myself WHY am I worrying? God has alwasy provided, He has always been very clear and direct with my husband and I, and has even provided in extreme and EXACT ways.....so I wouldn't put it past God to show us when we refigure our budget or when something comes up that we do have the extra, and exact amount of  $360 for gas money to take our LK to school.....

....with that note maybe I should go work on our budget.....LOL