catch up

So what's been going on lately...

Work...   My door...                                                                             

New bench for our kitchen table from Dad and Candace being the beast she is....

Finished my upcycle on the door for my headboard...

Left the keys to my car hanging in the door of the car all night... Found them and the car the next morning

Weathered the hurricane... It rained and rained and rained... and rained...

Listened to this little girl sing... Go to my facebook page to see for yourself!

Well, that is about it for now... 


what you do matters

The school year is off and running.  I don't know about all of you, but it seems to be so much more hectic than the beginning of last school year.  Yesterday I had to make myself stop and take a deep breath.  Today has been a nice balance of rest with a little preparation for the coming week.  Last week allowed little time for downtime much less blogging time - I apologize to all two of you who read my ramblings.

For the past week I have contemplating encouragement.  There have been times in my life where someone has stepped in my life that through either words or actions has provided encouragement for me.   I like words - actions can be misinterpreted at times unless they match the words and words contain a specific power to either build someone up or to tear them down.  I must admit that in the past words have been a weapon for me - a fact that I am not particularly proud of.  However, that is not the point of this post.

The focus is encouragement.  The weeks leading up to school starting found me not feeling a little discouraged - through some events and actions by others I felt a little like my contribution to this world was small and insignificant.  I felt as though I was not really making a difference at all.  Then the Lord brought to mind a few words that I had heard once on a television show - "what you do matters, it's what got me here."

Sometimes we really need to hear that - that what we do matters to someone out there.  I am sure there are those of you out there who are stronger than I am, and you don't need anyone to tell you that what you is important.  But maybe there are others out there like me - maybe you need to hear that what you do matters - you may never know this side of heaven the difference you make in someone's life but know that you are making a difference.

My moment of encouragement came from a 3 year old little girl who was laying down for nap on the first day of school who before she put her head on the pillow said to me, "I love you."  I took a quiet deep breath as fought back the tears (remember I am emotional by nature) as I had really needed that.  I love hugs, and it felt like God was giving me a big hug as He whispered in my ear, "what you do matters."

I just had to pass it on - I don't know if you are struggling with discouragement, burn-out, exhaustion, doubts, etc.  I just know that "what you do matters."  Believe that with all your heart, take a deep breath, and get back to it.


a punch & love

Well its officially the end of summer break for us.  Tomorrow we all go back to school - I must say I am ready for a return to our normal routine.  Being at home a good part of this summer has let me know that I might never be a stay-at-home mom.  I tip my hat to all of you who are, but cleaning my kitchen three times a day has made me somewhat crazy.  I cannot imagine doing that and running after children also.  I digress because that is not what this post is about.

This past week has been an incredible time of seeing God provide for Candace and my everyday needs, and it is truly amazing to see Him intervene in our lives especially when we fail Him so constantly.  Unconditional love is something that still blows me away especially when that unconditional love comes from the God of the Universe.  But I just had one of those "aha moments" I suppose - I pray that God providing for "the little things" in my life never stops being a big thing in my life.

I recently learned a working definition of exalt - which is to make something or someone big, to make a big deal of someone or something.  I love putting actions and pictures to words in my head, so anyways my life is to exalt Christ - to make a big deal of Him.  The way to do that is to live a life that reflects Him, and get ready for it.  Something I was punched in the gut with this morning - love, love God and love people.

1 John 4:8 states quite simply, "Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love."  Then double punch comes from 4:12, "No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us."

We are called to love, and the double punch is that people cannot see God even though they are looking for Him.  They are to see evidence of Him in the way we(disciples of Christ) show love to EVERYONE! Can we have a running, screaming fit on that one?   Maybe you just need to raise your hand, whatever suits you.  When I heard this from our phenomenal Pastor - John Stockstill, this morning I wanted to stand up and scream "YEAH" but then quietly sit back down because... well, wow!  John(our pastor not the disciple who wrote 1 John) said, "the distinguishing marks of a disciple should be how well you love."  This love is not just for those people who are easy to love but this love is for those who you, or I, or society would deem unlovable.  Hence the double punch and the quietly sitting back down embarrassed because this one comes with a list of names and issues a mile long.  How can I hold others to this standard when I have a problem loving someone just down the street, perhaps in my own family?

The problem is that I am not holding people to standards - God is holding all of us(me included) to these standards.  So in order to exalt Christ with my life, I must begin working on that list.  And just off the top of my head I should probably start with trying to see these people the way God sees them because He does love them like He loves me - no matter how many times I fail or offend Him.

So this is just what is going on with me, and I hope the Word of God punches you in the gut because truth sometimes hurts, but it is the pain of discipline that is God refining you and me. Our church posts the videos of the messages online so I will link the website here if you would like to check it our for yourself.

As always I leave you with,