Sunday, December 26, 2010

Glance back...Look forward!

This past year has been a roller coaster ride! 2009 ended with a cancer diagnosis and 2010 began with surgery..Grateful for the surgeon and her expertise... but a slow recovery and still trying to make up for the loss of the deltoid muscle in my left unfortunate victim in the removal of the tumor.

In March, my mom, who had been dealing with pancreatic cancer for the previous 16 mos..made the decision to receive hospice care. I went to live with my mom and dad for what ended up being 2 mos before she passed away on April 25..the day before Steve's birthday... Those 2 mos consisted of little sleep & lots of prayers. My incredible husband and children allowed me those two mos to care for my mom (and dad) something I wouldn't trade for anything in the world!

Amongst the greiving though, the year brought much to celebrate! In May, Steve's parents celebrated 50 years of marriage. Jessi and Jeremiah celebrated there first year of marriage and in August Steve and I celebrated 25 years.

A much needed trip to my favorite place in the world (Maui) was the site of a wonderful vow renewal ceremony shared with all of our kids!!!

December brought another Best Friends 60th birthday. Her son planned a week long trip to Disney World for all of us that was simply amazing!

The holidays have come and gone and although the absence of my mom will always be felt...there is so much joy in celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior with my family..

...especially sweet was the Christmas Eve service that the rest of the family enjoyed with my Dad. You see in 53 years he hadn't been to church..but because of the gracious service of some wonderful people at my home church in 100o Oaks {who reached out to my Dad when my mom passed away} he now attends church not just once a week but 3 times! He's involved in a men's bible study and a grief share group and on Christmas Eve... my kids shared communion with him for the very first time!

So as you can tell, I am incredibly blessed! No matter what this year has brought my Lord has given me everything that I have needed! Courage, strength, favor, love, forgiveness and so much more!
It's time now to spend some time in His word and in prayer seeking His direction for what this next year has in store..One thing is for sure..whatever I need I know He will provide!



Here's to a wonderful New Year! My prayer for you is that you lean into Jesus and allow Him to direct your steps!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Consistently Inconsistent

If there's one thing that I am consistent's being inconsistent (blogging that is).
Then my sweet daughter gently reminds me that I haven't blogged in a while and I search my brain for those things that ,in the moment ,would have been easily penned but now require a search party to find.
Lesson learned... the value in blogging ( for me) is to memorialize those pebble moments so that I will not soon forget God's faithfulness and goodness!

God has been in the process of woeing me back to himself for sometime now. No, I didn't walk away from him..But I had lost that sense of wonder... the amazing intimacy that is found with Him through Jesus Christ.

I am thankful that He has brought our family to a new church home. A place where His word is taught with tender care and respect and in way that it jumps off of the page and makes me want to know more and more and more! You know the feeling. Unfortunatley, we might most often experience that reading a great novel.Is not His word far more valuable?

Last September, He brought me to a Bible Study where His word again is handled with care and is taught with fervor. We have just begun a study in Genesis and He is speaking to me like never before. I am seeing the depth of His love for me and yearing to know Him more.

The past several months are best described in the words to a song by Jason Gray that have become my heartsong:

Give me rules...I will break them
Show me lines... I will cross them
I need more than truth to believe
I need a truth that lives and moves and breathes
To sweep me off my feet it ought to be...
More like falling in love
Than something to believe in
More like losing my heart
than giving my allegience
Caught up, called out..
Come take a look at me now
It's like I'm falling. oh
It's like I'm falling in love......

I've always loved Him and I know that He loves... but falling in love.. now that's a different story!
What's the song of your heart???

Monday, July 19, 2010

Life is Good!

I'm not terribly consistent with the blog thing! definitley not a daily blogger so twice a week will be my goal!!

It'a hard to blog when your out enjoying life so much and I definitley am enjoying the sun and warm weather that has finally kicked in in San Diego. It's safe to say that extended dreary weather actually affects my mood and that the sun can put a smile on my face quickly.
There's something about the ocean that instantly calms my spirit.
When the sun with it's blazing yellows, oranges and magentas sinks in to to the pacific ocean all is well with the world.
The sun , the warmth, the colors the smells and textures of summer are all God's gifts and I am ever so grateful for them all! They remind me of His power, His Sovierenty, His blessing and provision and the depth of His love for me!
Happy Summer!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Right there in front of your nose!

Some people are called to go to the far ends of the earth...some have jobs with big offices and influence and position...

God has definitely called me to mother and sometimes i take for granted that my girls are adults capable of making there own decisions...but right in front of my nose everyday I continue to have the privilege of speaking into the lives of my kids and their friends.I am particulary blessed cuz I can do it in the comfort of my own home, with my pj's on and it doesn't matter if I have showered or not.

A simple question has the potential to become a teachable moment. While infants, toddlers and even High Schoolers don't really relish the teachable moments... an adult child may come seeking counsel and wisdom and with an open heart earnestly want to hear my perspective.

One of the pebbles that blesses me the most in that is... that it appears that I have earned some amount of respect that is hopefully evidenced by the fruit that has been produced in my life because of a deep abiding relationship with Christ. (No doubt that was not a very good grammatically structured sentence but i never was much help with English homework)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Having not blogged much in the past week it's a little difficult to get back in the swing!

I'll be honest it's difficult for me to blog when I am experiencing challenging things!
Not major challenges but challenges of the heart.
Watching as friends and family choose to walk away from Christ and do there own thing...when unkind words etch themselves on your heart.

Men may have a hard time understanding how those types of things have a way of forming a big ball of yarn and become intertwined with everything else in our lives and can actually keep us from functioning well! I wish I could compartmentalize like men do!!!!

But God made me and most all women with a tendency toward being a little more emotionally sensitive to the circunstances in our lives.

That's a pebble that is valuable and precious although I don't always see it that way!
What's pulling on your heartstrings today?? Do your treasure the fact that God made you to feel deeply?

HUGS and prayers!
His mercies are new every morning!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Celebrate Life!

We're all pretty good about celebrating the big events in our lives.. Birthdays, Anniversaries, Graduations etc...and they should be celebrated over and over as they are snapshots of God's goodness and blessing in our lives!.

In the midst of the celebrations the were some moments that I choose to relish and will continue to celebrate each day!

...The articulate grace with which my eldest daughter expresses herself and the heartfelt prayer that she wrote for her grandparents in honor of 50 years of marriage !

...the contagious, spontaneous laughter that erupts whenever Alyssa responds with one of her quick witted remarks!

...the immovable, unchangeable truth that God is always present and sometimes He holds my hand as I walk through difficult moments..and sometimes He picks me up and embraces me and there is no doubt the He loves me more than I will ever deserve!

...The hope that He makes beauty from ashes and He has brought someone very special for my brother in law to journey through life with.

...Sitting next to my Dad in church (for the first time in my life)!!!!!!!!!!

I celebrate each new day! His mercies are new every morning and there is more to celebrate about each day than there are hours in the day!

What do you celebrate today!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mapquest your day!

I retreated to the mountains this past weekend with a wonderful group of ladies. God knew that I was going to need a "safe harbor" this year and in September He plopped me into this bible study group that has become exactly that.

Psalm 63:1-3 really spoke to me as we studied Gods' word together this weekend.

Joy in the Fellowship of God. A Psalm of David when he was in the wilderness of Judah.
O God, You are my God; Early I will seek you; My sould thirsts for You; My flesh longs for you in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.

I fellowship with God, I seek His face... but was struck by what David was actually saying here.

God fashions our circumstances and orders my steps... He wants to meet me early ( in the morning) in order to equip me for the day because He already knows what I am going to need and He wants to give it to me!

Would you ever think of getting in your car to start a journey without knowing how to get to your destination. Of course not!and God doesn't wants us to journey into our day without His directions for us either!

He wants to teach me :

Psalm 143:10-11

Teach me to do your will, For you are my God;Your spirit is good, Lead me in the land of uprightness

Psalm 86:11

Teach me your way, O Lord; Iwill walk in your truth; Unite my heart to fear your name

Psalm 25:4-5

Show me ways, O Lord; Teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, For you are the God of my salvation; On you I will wait all day long .

None of that can happen unless I get out of bed and open His word and Seek His face.

When He is just my Savior, I seek Him only when I need to be rescued. When He is my Lord I call out to Him early every day because I know only He can teach me, revive me , order my steps and provide for and protect me!

So many pebbles in His truths! Hope you'll find some today as well!
God Bless you on your journey!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Do something creative everyday!

Well I am taking a blog break for the weekend to spend some time in the mountains in God's word! Looking forward to a fabulous weekend of amazing teaching and getting to know some great new friends! Can't wait to share with you how He touches my heart!!

Until then I just wanted to share some sites with you that I just discovered. They made me smile and tickled the creative side of my brain!
So thankful that God has given me a zeal for the creative...a precious pebble that I try to keep polished!
Enjoy the journey!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Bon Apetite!

One of things I love most about facebook is the access to people I wouldn't otherwise meet.

Making my rounds today I stumbled upon a link to a blog. I am always looking for healthy recipes and am especially interested in gluten free ideas, not because I have to be ..but I have found that I feel so much better the cleaner I eat.

So here's the link in case you might like to try it!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Grace, Grace, God's Grace

Do you catch yourself making remarks about other peoples driving? Or others behavior? I will confess that I do have a habit of commenting about the drivers around me when they appear to do really dumb things!

Isn't it funny ( not funny HaHA) but funny interesting how God sometimes uses our own shortcomings to help to make us sensitive to the world around us. Don't know what I mean!

Well today I completely and totally by accident cut someone off while I was getting on the freeway. I felt so stupid that I didn't even want to look at the guy as he passed me and I'm sure had a piercing look to pass along as well!

Still don't see the pebble?
We sometimes have no idea what's going on in the minds and hearts of others but we're (or I am) pretty quick to become offended when we think they've crossed a line.

Two things come to mind...

1) The God of the universe sent His son to die for ALL my sins.
His gracious gift is so huge by comparison to the litle bit of grace that I need to extend to others.


2) comes from Proverbs 12:16...A foolish man shows his anoyance at once. A prudent man overlooks an insult.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The gift of His word

The most precious pebbles for me are found in God's word and today was no exception!
I just finished up a study in the book of Romans and today I was going back over my notes to soak in the truths I have learned.

Romans 15:19 For your obedince has become known to all. Therefore I am glad on your behalf: but I want you to be wise in what is good, and simple concerning evil. And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly.

I don't know about you but I am constantly playing a tape in my head of the things I can say( or the debate that can ensue) when called upon to defend my faith. I want to be ready, to know God's word, to not be tripped up by the evil one.

Upon further study...
Matthew 10:16-17
"Behold I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. But beware of men for they will deliver you up......
But when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; for it is not you who speaks, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.
Jesus is instructing His disciples as they go out to the lost in Israel to drive out evil. Much like we are out in the world everyday..His warning and His promise are ours as well.

For me that is a precious pebble to hold onto.....
I need to go be obedient to go where He would have me go and His Spirit will do the work in me and through me. Not because I am eloquent or articulate or a biblical scholar.
but because I trust Him and am obedient!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

He cares about the details

Todays pebbles.....

the warmth of the sun
blue skies
gentle breezes
my husband cleaned the bathrooms and made dinner! and the dishes!!!
knowing I accomplished all that needed to be done today!
the laughter in the house
the peace that surpasses my understanding
a sweet phone call from Steve's dad..for me! a first!
knowing that I married my best friend!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

He is perfect and I am not!

As my children have grown and matured into adulthood I have sharpened perspective on how God brought me through those challenging early parenting experiences. I didn't always see what He was teaching me or that He was using me. Sometimes it felt like I was in the desert! I spent alot of time on my knees. What I know now is that He was completely faithful. In spite of my weaknesses and shortcomings, He worked through me, showing me how to discipline, how to love, forgive, teach. In fact He gave me everything I needed to do the job before me. Even when I didn't see it or understand it ( or sometimes even trust Him). Parenting has been such a gift to me and I thank Him everyday for the privelege.
The Pebble in this today.... the wonderfully mature, God inspired way that both of my girls make decisions, nurture relationships and love each other!
I love to comb the oceans shore for beautiful shells and interesting stones. I take them home and store them in beautiful jars. They remind me of the smells, sounds and textures of the beach, my destination of choice for relaxing, thinking, praying and dreaming.

I don't have to be at the beach however, to collect beautiful pebbles. Those beautiful profound moments, inspiring conversations, kind words and thoughtful gestures that are reminders of God's faithfulness, goodness and grace in my life. I don't believe those pebbles should be kept hidden either. They should be shared and relished as our faith is built and strengthened when we witness the hand of God at work!

So, feel free to journey with me... my prayer is that it will be clear that my words flow from a deep abiding love with Christ and meditation on his word.