Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Birthday Wishes

Today is my husbands birthday. That makes it a very special day around here! Thought it is not a good picture, here is the birthday boy heading off to the skatepark, his favorite pastime.

We usually don't do big birthday parties with lots of gifts and such. Instead, we like to celebrate with just our family and sometimes a few close friends. We like homemade cards and cakes instead of store bought and we like to be at home. The real excitement is watching the children all day. They each have their own special and top secret surprise planned. You never really know what they will come up with.

Lily has all of her friends lined up at the table waiting for the cake.

Rarely are doors shut around here but, it can be acceptable on birthdays. Caleb's project is obviously super secret.
Here is a picture of the Abby working on her card for Daddy.

As for me, I am trying my hand at my first character cake for the occasion. Plus, I am trying to find all the ways I can to celebrate my husband today. I could write forever and tell all of the ways I admire him as a husband and father. Today, however, I would celebrate him as a brave man who continues to allow our Lord to do a mighty work in his life. I don't know many men with the strength of character to self examine and then invite God to make changes in their lives. I am blessed to have my husband.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Defining People

Why is it that we as humans feel the need to define people, to categorize them or put them into nice tidy boxes? Personally, I find boxes stuffy and confining. Is it absolutely necessary that once categorized by society, we must bear all of the attributes of that category and stray not from the box of that type of person?

What happens when a person we have categorized does something, wears something or says something that does not fit in the box we have them in?

Here is something worth chewing on...

If you are the type of person who tries to label or categorize those around you, what kind of box are you living in? Do you really know who you are or do you just do what you do because that is the box you live in?

My opinion...we are made in the image of God. There is nothing about my great God that fits in a box.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Things Learned at NWLC

1) There are many things we don't do cause "we saved"!

2) There are many times when you think you have it all figured out, but in fact, "You got the wrong one"!

3) We don't do that "W" word.

4) You just don't touch Jon's electronics!

5) There are few things in life that Missy gets really upset about...her jeans are one of them:)

6) There are some higher levels of thought that we hope we never achieve.

7) Visual worship is a declaration not decoration.

8) Jackie can bind the popo in Jesus name in 3 states!

9) We know what Larry would look like with spikey hair:

10) We Know what we must do to become great song writers :)

11) Lee's wife Kristy is an exceptional motivational speaker!

Out of Town and Back Again

No, I did not just quit blogging again. My husband and I had an awesome opportunity to attend the National Worship Leader's Conference in Leawood, Kansas this last week. I was a bundle of nerves of course because we had never been away from our kids that long. Fortunately, we have a great Nana and Poppy who took them to the mountains for the week to keep them busy.
We had 6 other folks from our church that went to Kansas with us that made the trip absolutely amazing! In fact, here they are...

This is the whole crew. My husband, Stacy, Jon, Justin, Lee, Pam, Missy and Jackie. What a blast we had. (While learning of course!)

These are those crazy boys that drove for us, carried our bags and took great care of us ladies. Thanks guys!

I just couldn't leave this one out. This is my brother and sister (or Lee and his girls :)) Much love to you guys!

The conference itself was nothing less than spectacular! Just imagine a huge auditorium full of worship leaders being led by folks like Laura Story, Mac Powell and Michael W. Smith.

Anyway, all is well and we are home again. We picked up Sandy from the vet and we are getting back into the swing of things.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Style All Her Own...

I just had to share this one! This is our youngest daughter and her latest fashion statement. This morning she chose a pink satin princess dress, her new pink cowboy boots with sparkles in them (courtesy of the Crowe family), and a pink silk flower in her hair.

I love the way that she feels free to have a style all her own uninhibited by the world's rules of fashion. I hope she is still doing this when she is 15 years old!

Playing With Our Father

Earlier this week I was talking with a friend on the phone when our conversation turned, as it often does, to the Lord. We were talking about a book I had read that beautifully depicted the Father side of our God. Not the father that guides, privides or chastises but the loving Father that longs to spend time with his children just being with them. We talked about how good earthly fathers often just play with thier children and how our heavenly Father must long to do the same with us. Why do we keep Him at arms length when He so longs to be a part of every aspect of our lives. Do we remember that he wants to sit and talk to us while we cook or go about our daily activities? Isn't he the same God that walked with Adam in the cool of the evening? Can we imagine what they talked about?

Anyway, that conversation with my friend has reminded me to look for my Father God each day and not miss an opportunity to play with Him and teach my children to do the same!
As a family we have always been willing to take a "rain break", but today it was different. My dear husband had been outside on the mower for a while and the kidos were out playing while I was working in the house with the baby. The kids had been running in and out periodically for water because it was soooooo hot out. Suddenly, my oldest daughter burst in the door and announced that it was raining without thunder and lightning. So, without hesitation, we took a rain break. As we were standing out in the rain with the kids, my husband mentioned that God was playing with us.

How awesome it was to take a break and cool off. It was even more awesome to know that our Father sent that rain so we could play in it. The bike ramp became a water slide and our clothes were instant bathing suits.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

To Blog or Not to Blog...

...that has been the question for the last couple of months.

It all started when our oldest son was invited to join the gymnastics team. We quickly discovered that this would require a much larger time commitment than his usual 1 hour per week gymnastics class. In fact, it would require 6 hours per week just for training and that would not include his meets. It would also require a much larger financial commitment. We had to sit down with our son, now 7 years old, and discuss priorities. We decided that we would allow him to be a part of the decision making process of which activities he would continue. We strive to keep our kids active. Until this point, he took 2.5 hours of dance, art, piano, gymnastics and was involved in cub scouts.

While praying about how to explain the situation to him in a manner that would allow him to start making Godly decisions, the Lord impressed upon me Ephesians 5:16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. This began a whole new discussion about they ways we spend our.
The way we spend our time is a sure reflection of our priorities. I began to consider the things that I put the majority of my time into. Those are the things that are priorities in my life. Then came the moment of truth. Did those things in which I invest the most of my time serve a kingdom purpose? Do those things actually make an impact on this world for the kingdom of God?

I began charting my days to see how my time was actually spent. I listed all of the things I usually do or want to accomplish. When blogging finally made the list, I had to ask myself if it served a kingdom purpose in my life. Honestly, at first I did not think so. Then, last Sunday night, a dear friend was testifying in church service. He said that sometimes he just wanted to scream to the world that he loved Jesus. Just this morning I realized that this blog is one of those ways that I scream out to the world that I LOVE JESUS!

So, with that said, I cannot promise that I will blog every day but I will do my best to testify to the glory of God in my life in this venue at every opportunity.