Monday, January 30, 2012

Hear it on Sunday, Use it on Monday: Grace in the note-taking...

I'll be mind wanders some Sundays.  Especially if the recap of last week's sermon is LONG or the topic is largely academic.  I know that all books of the Bible...even Leviticus and Revelation...hold great truths about God and His character.  We should know them and study them....but sometimes...when I'm sitting there, hungry and doesn't work out so well.

In addition to this admission I will also tell you that as a note-taker I'm an intense rule follower.  I like to form a concise outline...rambling preaching often drives me crazy.  So, as I sat struggling a bit yesterday...I decided that I needed to accept a bit of grace in the note-taking.  Exactly who am I taking notes for after all?  If it's not deep enough I should spend my time digging, not fighting sleep.  Thanks to my new Kindle Fire...there I sit with a Study Bible at my well as three Bible translations.

So, in a moment of freedom and grace, I stepped out of my control freak box and drew a line down the center of my new notes journal.  As I listened and dutifully took notes on the speaker...I also dug about my study bible...scattering cross references and commentary points along the other side of the page.

I wrestled with myself about whether this was "kosher" but decided that God wants me to grow closer to him.  I'm not dis-respecting the speaker, a most Godly man.  In fact, I may be more respectful than those that simply choose to sleep when the point wanders or their attention wanes.  I want to be pushing towards Christ at full bore...all the time...soaking in information like a sponge.  It might not make for neat, perfect outlines...but it makes for lots of information gleaned for my heart.

FYI--although not the main point of this post...we were in Habakkuk...and what I took out of it for the week was...God is just and merciful, even though his people may not always understand his ways.  "But the righteous will live by his faith" Hab.2:4

Friday, January 27, 2012

Command Center!

Now that little Emma-bean is in Kindergarten...papers and homework have been piling up and taking over my life. Okay, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration but not by much.

SO, I started pinning interesting organizational tools from my new favorite place to hang out...Pinterest! Woo....wooot!
AND...I went for it...purchasing some SERIOUS heavy duty command strips and file trays...and VOILA!  It's a thing of beauty!  I'm very pleased!  Don't worry...those leapfrog number/letter fridge toys are now on the their own rectangular boundary on the freezer side!  HA!
Organization makes me SO happy...I feel that I have a command center!  Hehehe!

Linked up to:

Thursday, January 26, 2012


This truly gave me goosebumps and brought to mind several Scriptures...

Then God said, "Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens."  Genesis 1:20

"O LORD, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures."  Psalm 104:24

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Rusty Memorizer Returns!

I decided to memorize Colossians this year.  I used to do Memory Mondays with Joann...and well, her life is forever changed...and I sort of fell out of the habit of daily/weekly memorizing.  I lacked discipline.

Why does it matter?  Sometimes, you don't always have a Bible handy...or you're lying awake at night and it's dark.  Verses don't pop into your head as readily in those important moments...unless you're storing them up in your heart!  I can do plenty of praying...or singing (some of those songs are verses)...but Scripture such a corrector, such a comfort!

But, I'm rusty.  The ole memorizer is creakin' and a groanin' ya'll!  The first two weeks required minimal effort but this week...Oui, I had to work for it!  

I'd been chanting away...
"the faith and love that springs from the hope stored up for you in heaven and about which you have already heard in the true message of the gospel that has come to you.  In the same way, the gospel is bearing fruit and growing throughout the whole world...just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and truly understood God's grace."  SEE it IS long isn't it!?

But, my heart was really struck when my kids noticed my memory mutterings the other day.  Whatcha doin' Mom?  Oh, you're learning your Bible verses?  I didn't know you did that??  

OUCH...I practice their verses with them for Sunday School...but I've never modeled memory for them.  The whole point of being a role model is to show that something is IMPORTANT...has VALUE...and should be perservered through....for an eternal purpose. 

Thank God for putting this resolution on my heart.  I hope my children see the LIGHT from His Word...shining off my silly head!

If you read this...and want a little accountability of your own...just sent me a comment about what Bible Verse you're trying to memorize...and I'll pray for you and check in again to see how you're doing!  Just some Sisterly love from me to you.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My word for 2012...LISTEN: Hilarity Alert!

So, I thought I'd show you my new pixie hair cut...well, that's not really true....but it is cute isn't it?
Anyhew...I have been thinking about God's great sense of humor.  You see, I picked a word to focus on last year.  OBEDIENCE.  I looked for it when I read my daily Bible reading or examined my life.  It was a hard word...but a good word.

SO, this year...I prayed about it...and chose LISTEN.  I wasn't going to tell anyone.  Cuz, well...I am a bit of a chatterbox...and I didn't want any comments (funny or otherwise slightly hurtful) about that particular word.  BUT...I did genuinely desire to understand this word better in it's connection to my relationship with Christ.

So...I started doing a Word word study...Listen, Listening, Hears, etc.  It was great...and I was relieved to see that God was dealing with me gently...He was helping me understand that LISTEN...had a lot to do with prayer.  With hearing His voice...with being aware of the Spirit's guidance.  Of course, that does mean that I have to SHUT UP, LISTEN.

Proverbs 15:31  "The ear that LISTENS to life-giving reproof will dwell among the wise."
SO,  these two pictures are to show you my cute cut...and my very damaged tongue.  Yup, I tripped over a bunch of shoes in the foyer and SERIOUSLY bit my tongue.  It was flapping on the side...Loverbrains almost made me go get stitches.  It hurt SO BADLY!  But, I figured it was a rather like breaking ribs...nothing much they can do.  I texted my Dad for some first aid suggestions....and he said I probably wouldn't bleed to death.  Very comforting.  Unfortunately, he was busy so didn't stop me from putting camphor on it.  I thought it would numb just stung...a lot. that's some good stuff.  But...I digress...

God will just do ANYTHING to shut me up.  Hehehehe.  I googled healing tongues and (aside from many pentecostal sites) I read that until things heal up it is best to not move talk.  SO, I was only allowed to go to Bible Study if I promised not to talk.  Every time I talked it bled some more.  So, I promised...and it was SO HARD...but I did LISTEN a lot more...and I learned a lot. 
Today, it's finally feeling a bit better....but I'm scared I might bite it, I'm still not talking much.  Hmmm...very interesting beginning for the word LISTEN.  The future may hold acute laryngitis! HA!

Proverbs 19:20
"LISTEN to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future."

Monday, January 16, 2012

Marriage Monday: Me, myself and I

I am…..a daughter of THE KING!  That makes me a princess, ya know!
I want…..more snow...I'm the only one but, hey...somebody has to like it!
I have…..not enough hours in the day.
I wish…..I wasn't so tired.
I hate…..exercising...but I'm doing it anyway.  Every day.
I miss… Grandpa...and wish he could have known my Loverbrains.  They would have liked each other.  In heaven they're gonna hit it off.
I fear…..change.
I feel… I need to take a nap.  Oh wait, one of the kids is up already. 
I hear…..the tea kettle whistling...Blueberry Acai Green Tea, anyone?  It's decaf!
I smell…..summertime in my cup...BLUEBERRIES!
I crave…..a closer walk with God.
I search…..the web...way too much....with nothing to show for it.
I wonder… I wander?  Sorry, first thing that popped out.  Know that song?
I regret…..yelling at my kids...whenever I do...I regret it.
I love…!
I ache…..cuz I did so many lunges today!  Ugh!
I care…..deeply...even when I laugh on top of my hurt feelings.
I always…..never say never...or always.
I am not…..thinking this list will ever end.
I believe… the Father...and in the Son and in the Holy Ghost!  Anyone else know that song?!
I dance… the end of Kung Fu Panda with the kids.  I crack myself up!
I sing…..quite well actually.  I went to college on a vocal scholarship...but changed my major to education.  I miss singing the "serious" stuff.  Now, I just sing at church.  Someday, I'm gonna sing in heaven!!!
I cry…..when I'm angry.  And it makes me SO mad!
I don’t always…..say I'm sorry in a timely manner.
I fight… pride.  I usually lose.
I write…..because it's cathartic.  Look it up.
I never….never say never...or always.  I'm sticking to it!
I listen…..but not nearly as much as I interrupt!
I need… be still and know He is God...and just LISTEN.
I am happy…..when I do.

Friday, January 13, 2012

5 Minute Friday: Awake


Somehow my alarm clock is all messed up.  My real alarm clock finally died over the holidays.  I've had it since it doesn't owe me anything.  But, my inner alarm clock is just whacked!  I feel like this baby...upside down.  I've always been an early to bed, early to problems in the sleep department kind of gal.  Now, suddenly, I'm laying awake at night...tossing and turning.  It's miserable.  Then, in the morning...this gal doesn't jump up for her time with Jesus.  I'm so far from AWAKE...I'm actually almost in, coffee.

And speaking of coffee...That's not it so don't even go there.  I only drink one cup in the morning...and no, I'm not giving it up...I'm drinking more water and exercising more than I ever have...ever.  And, I don't have any major worries.  Honestly, I was thinking about what I might wear to my husband's company dinner last night.

So, I'm resorting to prayer...RESORTING...yeah, duh!  Why is it my last resort?  When will I ever learn??

Oh, Dear Lord, Please help me to come to you right away about all things...great and small.  Please help me to begin sleeping WELL...Be my sleeping aide!  Allow me to be AWAKE in the morning...and up sitting quietly in my chair...AWAKE and listening for Your voice!!  Amen!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

"Gettin in the Groove" Hodgepodge

1. Lake Superior University has once again published a list of words/phrases they think should be banished from the Queen's English in 2012-
amazing, baby bump, shared sacrifice, occupy, blowback, man cave, the new normal, pet parent, win the future, trickeration, ginormous, and thank you in advance.
Which of these words/phrases would you most like to see banished from everyday speech and why? Go here to read more about how the words are chosen.
"Thank you in advance"...grrr...don't get me started on the state of thank you writing in America.  I guess it's just plain old fashioned ingratitude.  The only thank yous I get are the ones I self address at baby/bridal showers and "thank yous in advance"which are somehow grammatically disturbing and manipulative.  I had no idea that trickeration was a word at all.  Use that in a sentence, please.  Huh?
2. Are you easily embarrassed?
Despite my talkative, outgoing personality the answer is YES!  Why do people think that they can't hurt or embarrass extroverts.  Be nice, people!!
3. What is your go-to snack?
Lately, whole almonds.
4. Have you ever been to Washington D.C.? If not do you have any desire to go? What site/attraction would you most want to see in that city? If you have been, what's your favorite site/attraction?
I've been multiple times...always with my grandparents.  I like the Lincoln Memorial best.  I have a stunning picture of myself standing in front of it when I was about 9 in a mustard sweatsuit with teal scrunchy socks.  Cool man!
5. sit ups-planks-lunges-squats...which do you hate the least?
Love this question...hahaha...I hate planks the least...and lunges the most!!  I'm still sore from Monday....ouchie!
6. What's a small act of kindness you were shown that you've never forgotten?
Loverbrains and I corresponded via e-mail for weeks before our first date at Cracker Barrel.  I was early (no surprise) and fell asleep in a rocker out front while waiting for him.  When I woke up he was sitting kindly and quietly beside me...He didn't make me feel bad about it either.  SO, I married him.  HAHA!
7. Have you ever been a blood donor?
No...I've always thought about it though...maybe I should look into it again.  I'm an organ donor according to my driver's license.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I'm having the worst time getting into "my groove" since the holidays.  My house is showing this...but I'm just worn out.  Today, I'm doing laundry...and that's it.  Well, and picking Emma up from school, of course.  But...I'm happy to get back into the groove of Hodgepodge.  I missed it!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Flattered/Party Pooper!?

It is always delightful to have engaged followers and be tagged by a new friend.  I was flattered to be tagged my Marti of Marti's Musings...but as has become my general rule...I'm a party pooper when it comes to these tag thangs.  They just feel eerily like chain letters.  No matter how much I like the catchy ideas or questions, I just can't find the time to do all the linkage involved in this process.  I barely get out coherent blogs these days anyway, it seems.  So, I shall graciously bow out.  I did answer Marti's fun questions quickly though...

1.  Where do you like to vacation?
Every year I go on vacation with my family for a week in Upstate New York to our family homestead.  It's all vacations should be!
2.  Do you have pets?
We have a Shih Tzu/ Yorkshire Terrier (Shorkie) named Scruffy.  She's a year and a half old...and very calm and precious!
3.  What is your favorite color?
I love red and turquoise!
4.  How many are in your family?
Our little family is made up of me, (Bobbi), my sweet Loverbrains Darren, Schoolgirl Emma and Homeboy Caleb.
5.  What is your least favorite thing to do?
Empty the dishwasher!
6.  What is your most favorite thing to do?
7.  If money were no object what would you like to do when you retire?
Take a world tour....maybe by cruise.
8.  What is your favorite season?
9.  What book are you currently reading?
When We Were Strangers by Pamela Schoenewaldt for my bookclub.  So far, so good.
10.What time do you go to bed, get up in the morning?
I try to go to bed by 9:30...and get up at 5.  This hasn't been going so well lately.  Ugh!
11.How long have you been blogging?
Three years?  I think...not on this blog...I started with my MomE blog.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I love my Geek!

Sometimes it is entirely too awesome being married to a math head.  I LOVE that man!  I wanted to make this pillow I'd been ogling on Crazy Mom Quilts.  I knew I needed some 80 paper equilateral triangles to do this project.  I wasn't too keen on her method of cutting them out individually.  SO, I asked my sweet Loverbrains if he could figure a faster method. 
I think he sort of thought it was a fun challenge.  He figured it up so that I can get 10 out of one sheet of printer paper.  Yeah!!!  Much faster!!!  For those interested, you cut the paper down to 10 1/2" by 6 1/16"....then measure 3.5" on the long side and connect the dots/corners diagonally...and then connect the bisecting lines down the center.
Ta-da....I'm a cutting queen!
I have a huge bag of bitty scraps...and love the whole "waste not, want not" concept! 
Here are the first 2...Just 78 more to go.  SEE?  I did MATH too!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


"Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 3:12-14
At my exercise class Monday, we were sharing with each other about our New Year's decisions, what we were thankful for, our hopes... our dreams.  Ya know, the stuff women share when they're comfortable enough to sweat together...hahaha!  During our devotional time at the end, our leader shared the verses above.

The part that really struck me was the part I underlined....forgetting what lies behind.  Personally, I like to cuddle my hurts.  I tell myself that "those who don't learn from the past are doomed to repeat it" and other ridiculous nonsense.  In reality, I'm afraid.  Afraid that God can't heal, won't protect, doesn't have the best plan for me. 

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."  Jeremiah 29:11

Snuggling my hurts and reminding myself of them (notice: the exact opposite of what I'm supposed to be doing) is also based in PRIDE.  I tell myself how good I am...and how I don't have to like such and so cuz they are bad and mean and they hurt me.  Um, yeah...sort of realized I missed the point.

"And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”  Mark 11:25

As we discussed some of these thoughts, one gal said she had this drawing in her Bible of a target/bulls-eye.  She said, that JESUS should be our bulls-eye. 

Unfortunately, we aim for the outside edge of the target.  We start with BEHAVIOR...those things that we want to change.  I'm going to eat healthier, exercise more, control my anger, etc.  Sound familiar?

Maybe we hit a little closer into the BECAUSEs...the reasons we give ourselves for not quite focusing on Jesus.  The BECAUSEs can be legitimate hard things to get around.  They are those things that did happen and maybe they happened to us and BECAUSE of them...we aren't quite on target. 

But, we can hit the bulls-eye if we aim at JESUS!  He IS perfect grace, TRUSTworthy, and MIGHTY TO SAVE!

So, I'm going to attempt to fix my eyes...right on the bulls-eye of my life...JESUS!