Friday, February 28, 2014

6 Things I learned in February


It’s already the end of February and next month will be the start of Spring.  It’s sped by so quickly I couldn’t slow down as much to realize what I’ve learned this month.  Yet how can it seem to have gone by so quickly when there was a week in the middle of the month where we were given the gift to slow down due to a snowy week?

So thankful for those days to slow down and just be and just have fun.  And that’s good and that’s needed.  But then the snow melted and in the days after that, the few things I learned since then have been big to me…and still dwelling on some of them not knowing quite how to express it.

But these things I know I’ve learned so here they are…


1.  I still find joy in sledding.  Here in NC we don’t get a really good snowfall but once every several years.  Or at least it seems that way.  We’ll get snow but not the kind that’s good to make a snow ball or icy enough to sled on, much less enough to slide on period.  But this month we got a good one that kept the kids out of school for 3 days and even my husband’s work was cancelled as well those same 3 days.  We went sledding and sledding again.  Threw snowballs and build a fort.  And it was a joy the entire time – even though I wasn’t 16 or younger.

2. I found the recipe of how to make snow cream.  Of my many years of life, I’ve never made snow cream.  It was OK.  But it was fun to make!  It was a little more fun making homemade donuts on our new kitchen toy. 



3.  There are women all over this planet who have become passionate to live out their purpose in the name of Jesus.  The purpose to reach out, share, give, help and love by using the gifts God has given them.  I recommend reading the book Restless by Jennie Allen, the found of IF:Gathering.  This team of women from all walks of life but with the same love for Jesus gathered and felt the Spirit lead them to put on this gathering in complete trust to God.  They didn’t know exactly what would come from it but having trust that God will use it to help spread His love and good news.  It was an incredible experience even though I was there through a webcast.

4.  I learned what DWJTY stands for.  “Do What Jesus Tell You”.  Just do it. 

“Walk across whatever field, take whatever mountain, cross whatever sea.

Doesn’t matter if anyone else says can’t.
Doesn’t matter if anyone else says don’t.
Doesn’t matter if anyone else says won’t.

All that matters is whatever He. Tells You.”

5.  A sparrow is the only bird that can be found on every continent.  Did you know that?  I heard Shelley Giglio tell that fact when she spoke at IF.  

6.  I learned how much I really do detest mandated standardized tests.  They steal the creativity and confidence from a child and anger parents.   And now questions on the tests are questions taken from tests given in the 1920s and 30s?  What has happened?  Do leaders in our legislature have sons and daughters in public school?  Enough said because I could go on and on…

7.  There’s people who do random acts of kindness by putting a sticker on the bottom of windows at drive-thru restaurants that gives the people who notice it a smile.


Hoping we’ll all welcome spring soon and be renewed, refreshed and ready to take on a new season of life!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Know that you know


It’s Five Minute Friday where we write what comes to mind in five minutes of time.  Today’s words is SMALL.  I’m reflecting on what I’ve been reading this week…these verses I’m still trying to wrap around my small mind…Here it goes.


Know that you know, that you know.

Those words have been repeating themselves this week…this month…my entire new life.

Know that you know, that you know.

Know the kind of extravagant love the Father has lavished on you.

Know God through His Word because you need it.

Know God because you can’t get to know him until you try.

Know God has you covered on all sides…to the right, the left, above, below, in front and from the back. 

Know God’s Spirit can and does live in you.

Know God. Know God. Know God.

His Word tells us. 

“I am writing to you, my children, for your sins have been forgiven because of Christ’s name. I am writing to you, fathers and mothers, because you know Him Who has been from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men and women, because you have power over the devil. I have written to you, young boys and girls, because you have learned to know the Father. I have written to you, fathers and mothers, because you know Him Who has been from the beginning. I have written to you, young men and women, because you are strong. You have kept God’s Word in your hearts. You have power over the devil.

That’s from 1 John 2:12-14 and it’s as if it’s urgency. John repeats because he’s really urging us to know how we NEED to know God, how we NEED to be strong in our faith and NEED to know God’s Word. I believe that urgency was not just for the people during the time when 1 John was written but that urgency is now.

May we, as Christ-seeking children of God, know that we know, that we know, without a doubt, that God’s Spirit will equip us to overcome the small, and sometimes big, battles that we face daily and that we’ll be strong in our faith and be devoted to Him.  

I pray God that I will not fear and instead put all of my hope and trust in You.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Snow and tell



It felt like I was a kid again.  Those days when it snows all day and you’re out playing in it, sledding and laughing and being simply care-free. 

It’s been a joy sledding with my daughter, watching ours and the neighborhood kids build forts, snowball fights and snowboarding off homemade snow ramps with their ambition to be suspended in air like those we’ve been watching in the Olympics.










It’s so exciting because snow is rare in this area these days.

Those kids had no worries, were sledding, running and jumping with pure enjoyment and joy.  They didn’t care when their gloves became wet and snow melted causing cold water to roll down into their boots soaking through their three layers of socks.  It didn’t phase them that their cheeks becoming a little frost bitten. 

Even though I loved every moment being out there in the midst of all the fun (which was a few hours), this mama was ready to come in and thaw out before they were.

Once I got inside and into dry, comfy clothes, the snowflakes outside grew in number and size.

It began pouring snow – hard.





Yet there’s not even the sound of a whisper.  The flakes are huge mixed in with those tiny ones – all looking different.  No two looks exactly the same.

Isn’t that like how God created us?  None of us exactly the same and we’re all spinning around not knowing exactly where we’re falling…and often times silently. 

There are moments like this that interrupt our norm.  It makes us slow down.  Be quiet.  Rest.  Enjoy the simplicity of a snowflake.  It’s to break our routine to remind us God is beautiful and big and grace-full.

But it doesn’t stay this way.  The snow eventually comes to an end.

While thinking of that, my mind drifts to the IF:Gathering last weekend.  Over 25,000 women from all over the world, each unique and beautiful, swirled together for two days to celebrate how God is beautiful, big and grace-full.  And calls us.

Women joined together to be still and listen and worship and pray.  There were times of laughter, tears and being still and knowing He is God.

But we were not created to be in silence and stillness forever just as watching snowflakes silently fall won’t last forever.  There comes a point where we need to be like those kids who’ve been waiting for this enormous snow event for years and it’s finally here!  They can’t jump outside soon enough with excitement and anticipation as they propel themselves into the territory of untouched beauty. 

They run through the snow with full and complete joy.  They become snow angels and victorious warriors in snow battles.  They build ramps and dare themselves to soar off them. They relentlessly sled down high hills climb right back up them to do it again.  They abandons all fear and failure and worry and stress as they laugh, whoop and fly ahead.

And maybe you laugh that I compare such a thing as snow to the IF Gathering but it’s constantly been on my mind the past week so I can probably relate almost anything to it.

My heart and stomach and nerves and soul are swirling around like these snowflakes.  And I honestly don’t know exactly where they’ll fall but I do know it’s not time to be silent anymore.

We are to DWHTY.


I read words from Ann Voskamp a few days ago how as a follower, .

“Do Whatever He Tells You. Walk across whatever field, take whatever mountain, cross whatever sea.

Doesn’t matter if anyone else says can’t.
Doesn’t matter if anyone else says don’t.
Doesn’t matter if anyone else says won’t.

All that matters is whatever He. Tells You.”

So listen and make time to do that.  But I don’t think we’re to sit a wait forever wondering if what you’re thinking you’re called to do is what God wants you to do.  DYHTY.  If it’s not what He wants, He’ll let you know one way or another.  But if you sit and wait too long, you might miss the opportunity.


Monday, February 10, 2014

You are mine


I’ve been needing quiet time, but lately time's been smothered by responsibilities that came out on top.  And they’re still there but the kids are in bed, my husband is in another state tonight and I’m bundled up under a blanket on the sofa and am playing and listen to George Winston on Pandora as an instrumental piano piece of the classic hymn “Just As I Am” starts to play…


You’re invited to come on over here where I’m writing today to continue reading the rest of this post.

Just. As. I. Am.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Whisper out quiet thanks

Honestly it’s been a pretty full week.  Full of anticipation, some anxiety, added responsibility, lack of sleep, a listening ear, overwhelming feeling, excitement, on top of regular, every day things that have to take place.  That’s why when I’m keeping a joy list it helps bring me down a notch or two so I won’t forget to be thankful for the complex things going on…and even more for the simple reminders of God’s goodness, grace and gifts he offers and gives daily.


Breathing in and whisper out quiet thanks to God…


#1880  sound of our coo coo clock

#1881  sound of daughter and me laughing together

#1882  taking surprise dozen of doughnuts to staff and custodians at daughter’s school in honor of Harris

#1883  bubbles rising

#1884  water when thirsty

#1885  a fluffy robe

#1886  making rice crispy treats with daughter

#1887  playing battleship with kids

#1888  weekend get away with husband including a beautiful Inn, gourmet breakfasts and relaxation.

l#1889  earning history about Fort Macon



#1890  the sacrifice soldiers made in the Civil and Revolutionary wars

#1891  feet in the sand on a cold January day

#1892  walking on the beach with my husband (even on a cold, windy day)


#1893  sand feeling like silk in between the toes

#1894  my parents showing our kids my dad’s college, taking them to Frozen and an art exhibit.

#1895  new sheets

#1896  a new sled


#1897  zipping and slipping down the drive way and road in a sled


#1898  playing with friends in the snow



#1899  grilled cheese and tomato soup on a snowy day

#1900 a ministry expo at church to show all the opportunities to know and experience Jesus more

#1901 Sometimes when you’re wrestling with questions in your mind and heart, and you tell someone that you’re trying to figure it out - all of a sudden in your trying explanation, the words will just unexpectedly pour out of your mouth that actually answers your own question.

#1902  Facilitating a new bible study of 1 John with a new group of women

#1903  God orchestrating events and people to come together to proclaim His promises.


#1904  the smell of lavender

#1905  conversation over soup and grilled cheese (much better than my own) about dreams and what God’s doing and life experiences.

#1906  Walking Wisely Weekend and the passion our student ministry leaders have for our teens

#1907  Son’s excitement leading up to it.

#1908  The family who hosted 12 crazy middle school boys (including ours) and making them feel so at home even though they made their house aroma become that of stinky shoes and sweaty boys.

#1909  their link leaders


#1910  Helping launch a new blog for women and for them to learn and tell redemptive stories.

#1911  Butterflies going crazy in my stomach and my heart rate rising a little bit as I share with women at our church my personal story.

#1912  Reading a book where almost every page has words underlined and page corners folded down.  It. Is. Worth. It.

#1913  mom sending me a funny comic in the mail that is so like us

#1914  Wrote this post on facebook:  Starting to dry off after getting soaked from being shockingly sprayed on my face or really my whole head, and shoulders along with the kitchen counters, refrigerator, floor and even all the way into the laundry room with cold water because the kitchen sink faucet sprayer became unscrewed from the hose and water sprayed everywhere when I turned it on!! Hahahaha! I couldn't stop laughing after I screamed! My great hubby handy-man came to the rescue to fix it and a great son and daughter who wiped up all the water as we laughed some more!

#1915  open the blinds in early morning and shining bright right in front of me, yet so far away, the morning star.  “This is going to be bright day, child”  2/7/14  and then followed by a bright pink and purple sunrise.


#1916   IF:Gathering!!  Today!! 

#1917 “We write these things to you so that you can be full of joy with us.” (1 John 1: 4 ERV)