Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Holy Week

So a couple of weeks ago while listening to a Sunday sermon by Pastor Harms, Beau and I recieved some inspiration from the Lord. In the past I have allways been a big John 3:16 girl. For God so loved the world He sent His only begotten Son , that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. What an amazing simple way to explain our salvation. I learned it as a child, I knew the verse before I knew what it meant and I believe it is the Truth. But there is so much more..........

As a family we have allways put an emphasis on Christmas. It is the biggest and best of all the holidays! We start celebrating it months in advance and sometimes afterwards. Sure there is santa and all that jazz but we try to keep Christ at the focus of our Christmas, it is his birth!! but there is so much more......

Sitting in the pew that day Beau and I noticed something almost simultaneously as our Pastor spoke on it. Often I see the Lord highlight in my Bible. For me it is very visual, literally, and whatever it is i highlight it so it stays permanently. The verse that day was Romans 10:9 That if you confess with your mouth "Jesus is Lord" and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead you will be saved. Instantly Beau and I knew where our focus should be. Christmas is amazing and will allways be my favorite time of year. We will allways celebrate it wholeheartedly as a family. but from that Sunday on we knew the importance of the Resurrection! Jesus was born, as so many have been (albeit of a virgin) and he died as many others have (with all the sins of the world on his shoulders) but who has ressurected? Nobody I know. In this his prophesies were fulfilled. In this he stands alone. And the sharing of this verse that day helped us realize the importance of belief in this one fact. Sure I believed before but I cant say that it has been a focus of my faith. No more will Easter take a back burner. No more will we ignore all those nameless holidays that come before it. Easter is not second best. What happened that day and your belief in it will define how you live the rest of eternity. Wow!

Last Sunday was palm sunday. It was the first palm sunday in my life that i truly thought about what happened all those years ago. The first palm sunday that i truly taught Gods children about it as well. In addition to teaching my fab 5 each day, I have the pleasure of directing the preschool Team Kid program at our church. Last week I was blessed with the opportunity to teach them about palm sunday. We learned how Jesus rode in as a King, how people loved him and praised him. We made palms and walked about the church calling out Hosanna! This was the first time i took the opportunity to find out what it meant. Why did they call him such a silly girls name? Ive wondered all my life. My 3,4,5 and 6 year old friends learned what it took me 26 years to figure out. it means "help us, or save us" and so he did! by the end of the week they would slaughter Him like a disgarded lamb. How fickle some crowds can be :(

Tommorrow is Thursday. But let this Thursday be different. We will celebrate with the Lord's supper just as Christ did on this day so many years ago. Think of him tommorrow. He asked us to. Luke 22:19 this do in remembrance of me! Oh what little he has asked of us in return for the price he paid, lets honor him for it :)

The crucifixtion most likely took place on a friday and so we casually celebrate Good Friday, but this year we plan to do better. On the day our Savior died for our sins we will teach about him, his love and his reasons for doing this. This day will forever be more than a gentle nod on our calender.

Im not sure exactly how our family Easter will play out this year, but I can promise it wont be just about the eggs. sure we will have all that stuff, but there is so much more! We got out our new Resurrection set (the Easter equivalent to a nativity) and we have already been preparing. We will attend church, but not out of routine, out of reverence and celebration. We will put on our Sunday best and we will do so as if we are preparing for the return of the bridegroom (for we know not the day or the hour :) and we will teach the children why we do this. You put on your fav digs to go to a party right, well this sunday is the party to end all parties!! There will be candy and food, good music and great fun, For He Lives! and he wants us to celebrate! Friday night we will put Jesus back in his tomb (piper has been moving him in and out and all about for the last few days ) and he will re emerge this Sunday as we thank him for his sacrifice!

Beau and I are so thankful for Pastor Harms and his sermons each week, thankful he reminded us of something so important. And I am thankful to his wonderful wife who posted her blog this morning which inspired me to share my inspiration!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Fake it till ya make it..

Its no secret I have not been all that thrilled with things the past few days. Im definately in a funk for sure. I have good reason, i feel entitled, that makes it ok right? hmmm....maybe....not so much

When I was younger, i hated "fake" people. I thought that was the worst thing to be. If you are mad or dislike someone or something you should act accordingly. If you act nice about it you are fake and that is awful. Much more awful than just being awful right?

As I have gotten older I have caught myself doing this more and more. Then i realized fake isnt exactly fake. In somethings maybe it is, like babies and hair. A doll will never be a real baby, and fake hair is fake hair no matter how pretty. But a fake friendship can turn into love. Sure you are just being nice to someone who you are strongly irritated by (carrie calls this my Miss Courtney face) but God may turn that "fake" friendship into a real one filled with love. Unlike the fake baby, it has the potential to grow and change and God can make it into the best friendship you have ever had. A fake smile can turn into a wave which lands you a hug and ends up a kiss and finally you have a forever partner. That fake affection you show to a dog who keeps bugging you, most often is returned with genuine adoration.

So fake isnt allways so bad. I might be sad about something, but heck, I will go to the park with my fake smile with my beautiful children in tow and before you know it im smiling for real. In time i have lost my way back to that frown. And in even more time, i might remember my frown and go looking for it (hunting for your frown is called self pity and he is a FAKE friend for sure). So I have a plan, instead of hunting for my frown, im gonna find my big girl panties! Sure they used to be cute Victoria Secret ones but are a little outta shape since they did that stint as maternity big butt coverups, but they will do. I will wear them and my smile proudly. And before you know it my smile will kick my frown's A$$!!!!!
but remember ladies, fake hair will most likely fall out and it is no substitute for the fake smile. If you carry around the fake baby you will probably recieve a fake smile so when in doubt choose the fake baby if you must go for one of the two :)
and here is my rap debut cause i am a closet rap artist
turn that frown upside down
do a break dance then spin it around
if you see me frownin just give me a thump
lets jump it around and do a big booty bump
like my frown my booty will dissappear
its fading fast you might and that is clear
so im gonna smile and wear it proud
and your are dead if you see me and share this rap out loud , word!!!
haaaaaaaaaaa i have had to much starbucks today!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

the road not taken

Lately my husband and I have been discussing the future and what it holds for us. We found ourselves alone this Sunday at church. Our Sunday school class is losing some members to a move and some were sick or out of town. Instead of joining another group we decided to take that quiet time for ourselves. They come few and far between these days! We stayed in our empty sunday school room and decided to look for answers to some of the questions we have concerning our upcoming move. The Lord kept leading us back to Mathew 7:13-14 Enter through the narrow gate, for wide is the road and broad is the path that leads to destruction and many enter through it, small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and few find it.

Sometimes the narrow road will be a huge choice, like whether or not to serve in a time of war. But often the narrow road presents itself in small ways on a daily basis. This might mean letting it go when your coffee creamer is consumed by a toddler and he is halfway through your backup stash of powdered creamer you have on reserve for days like this! There is a choice, i can get angry and have a meltdown or I can get on my knees and ask the Lord to calm me down, move the creamer to a higher shelf and look on the bright side :) Im probably a bit healthier for it and I have just given my son a new goal to attain, ah the silver linings. Sometimes this means smiling back at a princess who used the feathers and glue you bought to decorate your table instead of her craft. The good Lord asks us to rejoice in all things right? :)

So many times we will be challenged. We could push and manipulate our world and stay here in our grumpy funk or we can give it to God and see what he has in store. For us this means a move to a new state,a new climate , a new home, but most importantly new opportunities to serve the Lord. I loathe having to make new friends, or step into a room where I dont know anyone (that voice likes to hang out in those places). Most likely Beau will face deployment and I will face being a single mother of five! Im certain the Lord will use this time to draw us closer to him and closer as a family. For that I am excited to see what he has in store.

The enemy would love to make me feel that I am not up to the task. But in the past he has allways proven wrong. I have learned the hard way that when I dont understand God's plan, just roll with it. Only he can turn the world's worst baby sitter into the mother of a fabulous five! Take a born and raise memphian who has never left home and give her the power to make a home whereaver the army takes her. He can turn a football fan who loves his Sundays, into a sunday school teacher with a dvr! the Lord can move mountains for sure but you have to take his path and give him the chance. The easy road is only fun for a little while and never ends well. There was a time when I almost chose the easy road and gave up a special opportunity in favor of being a "normal teenager". Praise the Lord that inspite of everyones opinions and advice, i chose that narrow gate. What would I be missing out on now!

Im studying about the Israelites and their walk through the desert. For 40years they placed their lives in Gods hands facing struggles along the way. I like to think of our time in the military as our time in the desert. We have left Memphis which was our home, and we will wander until the Lord puts us in our permanent place. Like the Israelites we will have our struggles, but there will be many blessings along the way. Who knows why he has chosen this life for us, we all have difficulties to face but know the life you have is the one he has given and not your own. We are merely aliens in this world here for a short time, make the most of it whether life has given you lemons or honey , or a little bit of both :)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

conversations with paxton

Paxton is by far our most spirited child. He was a pretty good baby, a quiet toddler and then one day his personality burst out! Suddenly he could write, practically read, and he let out a fabulous personality we never knew he had. He is extroardinarily intelligent and remembers everything you say. Like his mother, he sees things in his own way which is usually quite different than what the rest of the world sees. This leads to many interesting tonight

paxton: wouldnt it be cool if you could stay alive forever, its kinda sad that one day you get hit by a car and go bleh (he throws himself down and makes his best deceased face)

dad: well you get older and sometimes your body is just done , not allways a car lol

paxton: oh so like one day you will die, mom goes next , then parker, then me , piper , pearce and pike ....and oh wait Papa Tk...........hmmmmmmmmmm

dad: well he has a little more time left its ok

paxton : yeah, he needs a staff (pretending to walk with a cane and recalling this weeks Bible lessons on Moses) no not a staff, one of those things with tennis balls , yeah! (referring to an athletically enhanced walker)

a six year old has such profound thoughts on death :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

the one that isnt good enough

I know what it feels like to be the one who isnt good enough. Its a hard place to be but I assume most of us have been there. As a teen I would describe myself as a pretty bad kid. I remember sitting in class one day looking at a girl I thought was so nice and wishing to be her friend. I knew that day she wouldnt want to be my friend. She was a "good girl". She never drank or partied, she was allways in church. I was carrying a secret, I was a partyer , I had the attitude, I was everything she was not. She was too good for me, and yet she opened her heart, she took me out to dinner with friends on friday nights while i was pregnant. She visited and called. She came to the hospital when I had my baby. Though I dont see her often enough , she is still one of my best friends and she gave me something nobody will ever take. She gave me a maybe! Later in life i would meet people and think he/she is too "good" for me, but then I thought "maybe he/she will like me anyway". I would grow up and meet other women whom i wanted to befriend and think "she is an athlete, she is older, she is the pastors wife, her house is cleaner , she has no kids, she has so many kids, she is my mother/sister in law" she will not like me. Each time I thought of study hall with Jennifer, and each time I was wrong. All of these women have become my friends and family. So to jennifer I owe a little thank you for giving me the confidence to seek out that "maybe".

I realized one day that God gave me Jennifer for a reason. She is an example, though she had no clue. You see, I became a Christian at a young age but never really went past believing. As an adult I truly began my walk with Christ but every now and then I come across a speed bump in my walk. Its that voice again. The one that tells me "you are not good enough". Its everywhere, it was there when I began to homeschool. It told me I wasnt smart enough and certainly not Christian enough to be good at that. It was there when I first took a bible study. It told me I would get there and all those ladies will figure out you are a sinner and send you on your way. It was there when I was asked to serve on the board of PWOC and when I volunteered to teach sunday school and run preschool Team Kid. That voice is allways hanging around, but God has given me the power to ignore that voice. God told me one day to enter proudly into his home each Sunday morning. He said "You are my daughter and you are good enough to be there" and I listened. Like the daughter I am, he has to repeat it alot but thats what my Bible is for! It took years to realize that I am just as good as every other sinner in that pew. I am justified to be there and share the love I have for him with others anywhere. It took years to realize that just like Jennifer, Jesus doesnt care what I have done or who I have wronged. I am forgiven and belong to his kingdom, in fact, i just might be a princess there :) and nothing feels better than that!

romans 5:18 Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

to be or not to be

our home, that is the question...........??????????

so my blog and I have been keeping a low profile online for the past week or so. Why do you ask? We are knee deep in the throws of hunting for our happy home. Beau has been blessed with his replacement months to soon, allowing him tons of time at home to torture me with the inevitable. Happy Home Hunting, and its not even H week. Just for some background, my parents were addicted to real estate shopping. I recall looking for houses well, allways. We were allways going to look at homes whether we were moving or not. I dont ever remember not looking at real estate to be honest and I loved it!!! I wanted to be a real estate agent for years as a child. I thought they were soo cool! I thoroughly enjoyed the process of scrutinizing each home searching for flaws and hunting down those sneaky spots of character. I knew the difference in shiny and antiqued brass fixtures by the time I was 5. I believe the family motto was "Oh its nice weather, lets go house hunting" and so we did! I dont believe i ever left a grocery store without picking up the free house booklet. Soooooo why am I not enjoying this? hmmmm oh thats right, it wasnt my money being spent before lol!

It would be nice to be clueless and believe these people who label that room with Nascar decals proffessionally decorated, but i just dont. I have learned that real estate agents speak in code, for example : Needs some TLC= 20,000 dollar redo in the kitchen alone. I have also learned a few things about my husband and men in general. If his bedroom is big and there is space for a man-room, the house is fabulous and we should spare no expense to acquire this home. Also, men are attracted to yards, specifically those yards that appear to have been landscaped by serial killers. You know, the ones with tons of sheds for holding captives and who knows what else. Something about sheds, and decks and grills are attractive to a man and these backyard items can potentially blind him and make it nearly impossible for him to recognize shag carpet and mass floral wallpapering. BEWARE of exposure to such backyard items esp in the instance of floral linoleum flooring throughout a home, undoubtedly he will no longer be able to see this and may in fact find it cute.

But seriously, its stressful. Once people get wind that you are home hunting your phone never stops ringing and emails keep coming. Its insane. I am forever torn between nice and new and the beauty of that home from 1905 with more character than Johnny Depp. I feel as though we have begun living our lives only when we need a break from house hunting when I was prepared to house hunt only on our breaks? Its almost impossible to find a home that will comfortable fit a large family and a realtor that understands the average 3bdrm 2bath just wont do. In the end, it is in God's hands and we will make whatever he gives us a home no doubt, we have done it many times before! But please Lord Im begging , spare me from a home with a train engine parked in the living room. They seem oh so popular in Colorado and im sure someone else would love to have my train engine and im happy to donate :)