Just a Few Stairs on Our Hike!

Just a Few Stairs on Our Hike!
This lead up to where the green grass grows!

Friday, July 15, 2011

He IS my refuge!

I have been praying just that I can be humbled to the point that there is but one place I can turn. Broken may be a better term for it. Down so low that the ONLY place I have to look is up!
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18
I have been putting in job applications since February! Five months of application after application and it seems that nothing ever seems the right fit or if it does then I am not the one chosen for the position. With a heavy heart I did quit my current position. My last official day was originally to be June 30th but 15 days later I walked out the door for my weekend break.  I am in the process of training my replacement and I believe in my heart she is going to do an awesome job and offer the care and love that my patients deserve. Once all of the face to face introductions are completed I will walk out of the position that I have held for almost two and a half years.
I have prayed multiple times for closed doors. I don’t feel like I am strong enough at this moment in my life to fight the temptation of what appears to be the perfect position for me. I think that prayer has been answered time and time again but now I am seriously fighting the urge to start doubting that there IS a door just for me. I really feel like I am being led to share my knowledge, my education, and my love in a setting that somehow deals with children. I feel that this is something God is really laying on my heart. But now I am in the position that I have no idea where I am supposed to do this! I had an experience tonight as I sat and watched five of our six girls participate in the completion program for the bible school that they have attended this week. I watched our beautiful children up there singing and dancing and sharing their love for God and impressing us with all they had learned over the course of the week.  A few moments into the program my stomach began to ache, I felt nauseated, and for a moment even light headed. It hurt to the point that I could not even comfortable sit upright and I decided to come home instead of staying for hotdogs (which sounded seriously unbearable at that moment). Mom and dad were there and agreed to bring me home so Steven did not have to leave. The maybe two mile ride to my house I felt like something was crushing my chest, like it was almost hard to breathe and I had to almost make myself mumble my goodbyes to my parents before getting out of their truck. The stomach pains were still present and I could not tell if they were hunger pains or some type of real upset. As I turned the key to enter the house I could not get to my bible quickly enough and for the first time all day I felt as if I was finally getting my time with God today! The pain stopped! I suddenly could breathe easy! And it was almost as if I could feel His arms around me as I collapsed on the bed and just cried.
Steven keeps telling me that I am “going through a season” and that it is evident. I am not even sure that I understand that completely. Or maybe I do and I simply do not articulate it the way he would. I feel that I am being prepared for something. What, I have NO IDEA!! Some days I feel that I pray until my voice is hoarse and my tears have all dried up to try to find what that something is. I feel lost without  direction, hungry with no bread. And there have been many, many moments that it seems difficult just to catch my breath. I try to live the way I am supposed to, pray like I should, read the bible every day ( I succeed most days), watch my tongue, hold my judgment, love my children, love my husband. Of course I make mistakes, I am a human. We all do. What I do know is that the last few days, weeks, even months, I am searching for something that makes me feel closer to God. I am constantly searching for a meaning in my life other than a wife that adores her husband and a mommy that is completely in love with her children.
Just this morning as I jumped in the shower for a VERY quick shower as I had already over slept by about two hours the words kept coming to me, “He is my refuge”. Over and over it was as if someone was actually whispering that in my ear. I was searching my memory, I was reading in Matthew last night and I don’t think it came from there, Numbers, no, it certainly had not been something I read there. A quick Google search led me to Psalm 119,
“You are my refuge, my shield; I have put my hope in your word.” Psalm 119:114
What?! I flipped back to verify but I am only at Psalm 25 since I have starting reading the bible through in March. So I was seriously confused as I wondered how these words were coming to me. It did not even really dawn on me this evening until I heard the words come from Steven’s mouth, “So, God was talking to you today huh?” What?! He was talking to me!! I even skimmed through the many church bulletins that were stuffed within the covers of my bible dating back for months to see if maybe I had heard this come from our pastor. That verse is not even underlined in either of the bibles that I read often! It HAS to be God telling me something! Am I even worthy of a message from Him?? I certainly do not feel that I am. I am trusting what He is telling me though, He is my refuge, my safe harbor, my shelter, my protection! I am learning to rely on my instinct that when I need to step away from everything that is surrounding me and have my time with Him, I will!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Seek Him continuously!

“The eyes of the Lord are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.” Proverbs 15:3
This is a great verse to keep in mind as we move throughout each day of our lives. We constantly, as humans, we pray to have something, or to do something, or even to find something. But too many times we fail to acknowledge that God is constantly protecting us from evil and preventing us from making mistakes or poor decisions. Steven and I talk about this often that people do not take a moment to realize that we are not designed to travel at 60 MPH in an automobile, yet for the most part we arrive at our desired destination unscathed. There are so many examples just like the above mentioned that could be given to exhibit the bad things that we avoid on a daily basis and never give thanks for that circumvention.
“O Lord, do not forsake me; be not far from me, O my God. Come quickly and help me, O Lord my Savior.” Psalm38:21-22
Often times we lay the blame of a situation that does not go the way we would like on God. Instead we should pray to hold dear that connection that we have with Him and realize the blame lies with the enemy, the devil! Those evil spirits work constantly to hinder our relationship with God! Seek him continuously! Those are three simple words that were laid on Steven’s heart during his morning prayer a few months back. Three simple words that he was directed to say to me. Those three simple words have turned into a powerful connection that I have created with our Heavenly Father. Simply put, when I get frustrated about something those three words almost immediately come to my mind now. I am slowly learning to take that little message and turn my frustrations into time spent “on my knees”.  At first it was much easier just to mumble a few profanities under my breath as I tried to figure out a fix to the problem at hand. Now, as my message rings out to me instantaneously, “seek him continuously”, I pray! And then I pray some more, and sometimes when I am finished, I pray again! There are more and more days that it seems the constant hum around me of the day’s happenings are simply a backdrop to the REAL things that are going on with me as prayers are going up continuously. I tend to overlook the formalities of everyday life and while I may be offering a smile and an occasional nod to someone I am sitting in front of, the REAL conversation I am having is one with the ONLY person I am to answer to! God!
“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Jesus Christ.” 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18
I refer back to that verse quite a lot. I even have it posted on the wall directly beside my desk at work. I am constantly trying to incorporate that kind of obedience in my life. We are blessed! I am thankful for that! Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts tonight.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Random Thoughts!! :)

Some random things that make me smile!

I love God!*** I love my husband and our children!***I love it when my girls say, “I love you most from coast to coast”.*** I love surprises!*** I love to wear flip-flops (even in the winter)!*** I love peace signs and big sunglasses!***I love coffee first thing in the morning!*** I love the smell of the ocean and the way it feels when waves crash around my bare feet!*** I love giraffes!*** I love beef and mushroom calzones from our local wonderful Italian restaurant!*** I love NFL football! Go Dallas!! :) (Has anyone ever realized that my youngest is named Landri, after the one and only Tom Landry).*** When I have to endure winter time, I love to snuggle up with a cozy blanket and smell something warm and yummy in the crock pot!***I love life and try to enjoy the wonderful gifts that surround us everyday!

Some quotes that I love!

Sing like no one's listening, love like you have never been hurt, dance like nobody's watching, and live like its heaven on earth.”

Scars remind us where we have been...They don't have to dictate where we are going!!” Author Unknown

Smile and the world smile with you!

“Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened!” Dr Seuss

Things that drive me bonkers!

Someone gritting their teeth!***Dirty clothes in the floor BESIDE the hamper!***Procrastination!***
Clowns! They are so very creepy and unnatural!***Spiders! EWWWEEEEEE!!!!!***

The Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

I love this prayer!

I was just in the mood to share some “about me” info! Have a blessed weekend everyone!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3, 5-6

Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Faith of a Five Year Old! Awesome!

We are all recovering from a much needed vacation with the kiddos. I truly think at times a vacation is needed to recover from the actual vacation! We left out Thursday with tow (yes, two) cars loaded down with Steven and myself along with 7 girls that range from the age of 4 years all the way up to 16 years of age! We were able to spend the first night at the beach house with my sister, brother-in-law, nephew, and two of his friends! The next day was spent enjoying the warm sun and the water, there were a few simple kinks in the day, three of the five teenagers that were with us were stung by jelly fish but it didn't make us lose sight of the importance of relaxation and family time that we needed greatly! My sister and her family packed up and left early Saturday morning, I was sad to see her go. We do not get enough time together it seems! We had some wonderful, extraordinary experiences in the short five days that we had together. For instance, one day Steven went out into the ocean and forgot to take off his glasses, not like sun glasses but actual prescription glasses. We looked for a few minutes to try to find them but the waves were furious that day and that along with the wind and presumed sand and shell damage to the lenses by that point seemed like a lost cause and we gave up. A few hours later, Bailee B went out to rinse off and there at her feet were the glasses! Not ONE scratch on them! What are the odds of that happening?! Steven and I were later talking about second Kings and the lost ax head.

“As one of them was cutting down a tree, the iron ax fell into the water, and he cried out, “oh, my master, it was borrowed!” then the man of God asked, “Where did it fall?” When he showed him the place, the man of God cut a stick, threw it in there, and made the iron float. Then he said, “Pick it up.” So he reached out and took it.” 2 Kings 6: 6-7

Both Steven and myself had said a prayer about those glasses and certainly that prayer was answered as Bailee Be walked out into the ocean and looked down to find them safely at her feet!

Later that night we were making decisions about what we would try to treat the children to. With that many people present we really had to be thrifty about our choices and we opted for putt-putt golf over ice cream because Callie, a 16 year old family friend that was with us had never played putt-putt golf and we decided that we wanted her to experience it. As I walked up to pay, the man at the counter asked, “how many?”. My response was nine and he looked at me a little surprised and asked, “really?”. He then went on to ask, “are all of those girls yours?”. I said, “six of them are and one is a friend.” He ONLY CHARGED US FOR THREE PEOPLE!!! We were able to go for ice cream after the putt-putt! I know it sounds like a horrible, spoiled rotten thing for us to be concerned about but our children have what they need but not a great deal of things that they simply want. We cook dinner at home (for the most part) and enjoy simple things like playing together in the back yard but as far as treats like these two I have just mentioned, we don't do it much! God knew what we wanted for our girls and He provided!

I could go on and on about the blessings that accompanied our time away but it would be unbearable for some to read I would imagine. I will mention one more thing that really stands out in my mind. On our ride home the sky was cloudy and it had begun to drizzle rain, a large Volvo 18 wheeler and I were continuously passing one another. It made me nervous as it continued to lose power going up the hills and my Honda would be out in front only to hear that truck barrel down beside me as he picked up speed again going down the hill. I simply said, “say a little prayer girls, this truck is making mommy nervous”. Rylee spoke up immediately and said, “Dear God, thank you for this day, thank you for the rain to water the flowers and grass, and keep us safe on our trip home.” But then she added at the end of her little prayer, “But I am not scared to get in a wreck and die because I will get to see you when that happens”. WOW! Those are some powerful words coming from a five year old! I was searching my own memory for some time when I may have had this conversation with her! Wondering if we had included it in a bible study with the children. I can not ever remember this subject coming up (to the littlest ones of our crew). Is it possible that she can just KNOW that?! Is this included in that awesome, untainted faith of a child BEFORE the corruptions of this earth can manipulate their thoughts and beliefs?

“Let the children come to Me. Don't stop them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I assure you: Whoever does not welcome the kingdom of God like a child will never enter it” Mark 10:14-15

I look at Mark 10:14-15 differently now! That unbelievable faith that my five year old displayed inspires me to encourage that type of growth within my own spirituality!