Sunday, November 28, 2010

Simple Pleasures!

It's much prettier in person! ;o)

"You Are Loved"

What a beautiful song...

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ornament Sharing Friday!

Here's our lovely red beauty!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Reflective Day...

What a reflective day of depth I have had.

I'm not sure Josh Groban's personal meaning behind the song "Remember When It Rained," but I know when I hear it I think, feel, hear, and see "God."

Long ago God's grace did rain down on me;
I heard Him call my name,
but in the darkness of this world I remain,
unable to avoid all pain.
(D. Kirby, 2010)

Do you feel this way too some times? A craving to breathe fresh, non-toxic air that fresh 'Rain' brings?

As I have listened to this song today, it reminds me to be thankful for His purifying water that brings hope. Yes, in His water I will remain -- so very thankful His water never drys up...

"Remember When It Rained"
(Josh Groban)

Wash away the thoughts inside
that keep my mind away from You.
No more love and no more pride.
The thoughts are all I have to do.

Remember when it rained,
felt the ground and looked up high
and called Your name.
Remember when it rained.
In the darkness I remain.

Tears of hope run down my skin,
Tears for You that will not dry.
They magnify the One within,
let the outside slowly die.

Remember when it rained,
I felt the ground and looked up
high and called Your name.
Remember when it rained,
in the water I remain.

(Bridge)Running down(x7)

This afternoon it began to rain outside....
so precious is He!

And then there is this....
(makes me just sink deep into Papa's arms tonight
with a heart of utter thanksgiving for who HE is!)

Because of Him, I am a mountain dweller!
How about YOU?

"There is no life - no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly,
but when You come I am filled with wonder,
sometimes I think I glimpse eternity."

So unbelievably fabulous is my God! When I Googled the above lyrics, THIS is the FIRST link that popped up. You must check it out. If you have followed me at all for very long, you know God speaks to me in "tree." Oh how I love Him!

Giving thanks tonight for a God who intimately cares for and loves me....
I hope you know Him too!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Meet the Triplets

Today was just delightful! I spent the day with my daughter going wherever the wind blew us. Tonight as I reflect on the blessings of today I thought I would share some "additions" to our family that we picked up today along the way....

I ask you, "Who could resist those eyes?" :o)

Totally precious.... the children just love them!

Simple pleasures; simple joys!

Isaiah 41:10

This morning I read something I have never read before. Well, I need to rephrase that. I have read the verse more than a hundred times in my lifetime and memorized it, but not the translation I read this morning.

Here's how I memorized it:

Do not fear, for I am with you;
Do not anxiously look about you,
for I am your God.
I will strengthen you, surely I will help you,
surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

Now here is how it is in the Amplified:

Fear not [there is nothing to fear], for I am with you;
do not look around you in terror and be dismayed,
for I am your God.
I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties,
yes, I will help you;
yes, I will hold you up and retain you
with My [victorious] right hand of rightness and justice.

The phrase "I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties" really stood out to me this morning. If you have read my book, I speak about the necessity to develop deep roots --- holding power -- so that during storms we stand strong and tall... immovable in Him. How special it is that as we rest and stay calm in God through the storms of life, HE strengthens and hardens us...upholds us and retains us!

Have you ever seen a toddler with say a splinter or a cut? They bounce all over the place while screaming their heads off. While attempting to help them, parents are often heard saying, "You need to stay still!" I don't know about you, but I don't want to be a toddler in God's family!

God's goal is to mature us past the "bouncing all over the place, screaming our heads off" place to the place of calmness, knowing He will help. As I often say, God sends the storms and controls the storms, so as to mature us - ever calling us to grow stronger and deeper in Him. We can't grow big and strong with deep roots without passing through the storm-trials of life. Let's consciously pass through them calmly, dedicated to growth!

How I hope you too find a depth in this verse perhaps you have never seen before. Perhaps it is a different phrase than the one that stood out to me. Whatever part stands out to you, meditate on it today.... and be grateful for who He is in our lives! Our ever present, wondrous God!

Time to hit the trail to exercise this morning!

Have a most blessed weekend, my siblings!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ornament Sharing Friday!

The Story of the Candy Cane

Many years ago a candy maker wanted to make a candy
that would symbolize the true meaning of Christmas -
The hard candy was shaped like a "J" to represent that Jesus is our rock of all ages.
The candy was made of white to stand
for the pureness of Jesus.
The red represents the blood
that Jesus shed to save us from our sins.

(Click for larger view)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

"I Will Worship You"

This has been my favorite worship song since the first time I heard it. I play it in the quiet of the evening and in the beauty of the dawning morning.

I pray it penetrates to the depths of your being....
I pray you are able to sing it in spirit and in truth...

PS: New Article found at

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"I Will Sail My Vessel"

As I was fixing breakfast this morning, I so clearly heard "I will sail my vessel...." being sung within my spirit. So much so that I flipped off the burner -- set breakfast aside -- and Googled it. (My musically illiterate self is SO thankful for Google. :o)) Needless to say, my kitchen was filled with music minutes later!

What beautiful lyrics! And the beautiful truth is that with Jesus (The Living Water AND my Captain), the river never runs dry and I'm sure to reach my destination!

"Choose to chance the rapids." "Dare to dance the tide." Or my favorite, " Like a bird upon the wind!" Whatever lyrics speak to you, picture it in your spirit... let the reality of "doing" sink deep... and then ride the wave of opportunity when it comes!

Those that are faithful with the small....

If you have a heart to live -- really live -- and you are walking according to God's principles, God will bring the opportunity. But when it comes, YOU have to decide to hit the water.... or in my case, hit the sky! ;o)


You know a dream is like a river
Ever changin' as it flows
And a dreamer's just a vessel
That must follow where it goes
Trying to learn from what's behind you
And never knowing what's in store
Makes each day a constant battle
Just to stay between the shores...and

I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry
Like a bird upon the wind
These waters are my sky
I'll never reach my destination
If I never try
So I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry

Too many times we stand aside
And let the waters slip away
'Til what we put off 'til tomorrow
Has now become today
So don't you sit upon the shoreline
And say you're satisfied
Choose to chance the rapids
And dare to dance the tide...yes

I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry
Like a bird upon the wind
These waters are my sky
I'll never reach my destination
If I never try
So I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry

There's bound to be rough waters
And I know I'll take some falls
But with the good Lord as my Captain
I can make it through them all...yes

I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry
Like a bird upon the wind
These waters are my sky
I'll never reach my destination
If I never try
So I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry

Yes, I will sail my vessel
'Til the river runs dry
'Til the river runs dry

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

New Rhythm... It's a Fine Thing!

I woke up stinkin' early Monday morning.... like 4:00 early, thank you very much... with a revelation. (I just love waking up to His intimate presence... like He is just waiting for my eyes to open so He can say, "Good morning, my dear.")

For the past year, I have felt -- well, "out-of-sync" a bit. I lost my rhythm at this time last year through a major shift God brought to our family. And while A LOT has been accomplished this year to His glory, I have missed "rhythm" being a part of my life. But a God-shift brings a new season, a new season brings growth, and growth brings a new rhythm. Oh the thrill at 4:00 am Monday morning when God woke me up with the gift of a new rhythm. As such, it is already impacting myself and my children.

I haven't set an alarm clock in years. (Thank you, Mom, for instilling in me an internal alarm clock!) But I now find God has set my "early wake up time" to an even earlier wake up time. (I don't mind; I actually love that He jealously enjoys our time together as much as me!) After our one on one time together, I fix breakfast and then call the children to rise for the day at a set time. We have breakfast together, devotions together, exercise together, and then hit the books by 9:00 am. Our goal is to have school completed at 2:30 and have "snack time" together. No one gets snack until everyone has finished their school work.. (grin) ... Let just say it facilitates diligence. (double grin)

Thereafter, whatever I am doing -- unless I give them free time -- they are doing with me. Yesterday afternoon, we all pitched in and got over half the garage in order. Today, we will hit the other half. Our goal is to make half of our garage into our work-out area. We have a treadmill, located now in the master bedroom. We have a weight bench and weights, located now in my eldest son's bedroom. But we all agree it is time to pull it all together so we can more easily work-out as a family. We are stoked! We have made it our goal to do an "-atholon" together of some sort in the next six months. Whoooha!

So, praise HIM;
Mama's got a NEW rhythm, and it is a FINE thing indeed!

If anyone knows anything about me, it is that I am not a person who defaults to "the slack"... and I never permit those who surround my life to do so without encountering the highest form of resistance possible from me! At the core of my being is "All things are possible.... in Christ Jesus!" Period! As such, I have raised my children that ceilings are meant to be busted through ....

There are to be no barriers between us, God, & our purpose,
No "can'ts" .... no "won'ts" ... no nothing;
ONLY purpose, passion, and persistence.

I have written this, said this, taught this,
and with dedication, set out to live this!

Reflecting back, I see last November that I encountered a ceiling.... and through an incredible God-shift that ceiling was busted through. Over the last year, I was gifted with growth. And on Monday, I was gifted with my new rhythm!

"Onward, troops... onward!"

Are there ceilings you need to bust through? Don't be content to live at the ceiling! To do so is to squander life!

With God, bust through, siblings...
Live a dedicated life of purpose, passion, & persistence!

A God-shift brings a new season,
a new season brings growth,
and growth brings a new rhythm...

Praise Him!

Love to you,

PS: A new article is coming in the next 24 hours to the website! Be on the look out! It's called "Dying Roses."

Saturday, November 13, 2010

"It is well."

I was awake this morning before 5:00 am and finally gave in to the early wake up call, rolling out of the bed and meandering downstairs. I confess I took my pillow and a blanket in the hopes sleep would fall upon me again.
It didn't happen.

As soon as I walked into the room, His Word was there before me. Within minutes I was reading in 2 Kings of Elisha and the Shunammite woman. A couple of key phrases popped off the page at me.

"..... that I may run to the man of God...."


"It is well."

If you have a bit of time, I encourage you to read the account in 2Kings 4.

Already God was speaking volumes to me. Then -- having my laptop on, ever ready to make journal entries -- I came upon a web page of an apparent Christian sister. Let's call her Suzy Cue. Suzy Cue's web page was filled with all things "warm and fuzzy," and that's great if you happen to have lived and are living such a life.

In contrast, I have lived my life, by and large, in the trenches. Still to this day, life is not what I would call "warm and fuzzy." Storms and pain are a routine part of my world. And while I may not know what smooth sailing is about, I do know intimately how to traverse ridiculously rough storms. I may not necessarily like that I possess such knowledge. And yes, I am tempted to be a tad on the green side of Suzy Cue, but if life has taught me anything it is that my life is not my own. My life belongs to God, and He can do and shape whatever He wants to within it for His purposes. As one of my recent favorite songs says, "I bow to You." (Follow link if you care to hear it.)

Furthermore, 'smooth sailing' never fully teaches a person what a incredible gift we have been given in that we no longer have to "run to the man of God" as the Shunammite woman did. No, I am blessed with the privilege of running to God Himself. And not only am I blessed with sitting with Almighty God... my Abba... my King... my Helper at 5:00 in the morning, but I get to hear His voice. I will NEVER stop reminding myself just how incredible that is! His voice is my lifeline. There is nothing like it.... nothing. And the day I think hearing God's voice is ordinary, mundane, or a causal entitlement is the day I will have lost ALL proper perspective and grounding.

No. Perhaps I may never know what smooth sailing is all about, but I wouldn't trade my deep roots to find out...
and I mean that.

The Shunammite woman reported, "It is well," even though her only son had died.

How does this happen? Deep roots -- that's how. Let's just be real a moment... sometimes life just bites... and it bites HARD. But truth is, depending on what kind of plant one is, for roots to go deep -- they have to hit rocks once in a while... they have to endure droughts ... they have to pass through hard soil.

I'm a deep root tree. A few weeks ago, I was given a compliment I am still meditating on, "You're an oak." I don't live on the surface. I don't talk "surface" talk. I can't. I can't recall what life was like at the surface, much less talk frivolity. Depth happens because storms happen, and since I don't control the storms... I have but one choice when they hit... grip the ground and press down.

As much as perhaps Suzy Cue's life is tempting if I had the choice, I appreciate my purpose over my comfort. My prayer --- my absolute prayer -- is that God will use me in increasing measure to stand by others when storms hit and to share the "how to" of not just storm survival
.... but

This week there arrived in the mail a necklace. It was a precious gift--a priceless gift -- from a sibling in Christ. I was tempted to take a picture of it and share it, but there is a deep sense of intimacy about it right now that I dare not violate. It is of a huge tree, showing both large branches above and deep roots below. In the background is a huge rendering of the sun (aka to me: the Son). Along with the gift there came a precious statement that included the following verse:

Whether you turn to the right or to the left,
your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying,
"This is the way; walk in it."
Isaiah 30:21

Yes, Lord, it is well ... it is well...


Friday, November 12, 2010

Ornament Sharing Friday!

Oh how I pray your Friday has been good to you! Mine has been so very busy! Praise the Lord, I am just about to wrap up, but honestly this day has felt like three in one!
"TGIF" has rarely ever been a more exacting phrase!

Well, as promised, here is Friday's ornament! Several years ago, the children and I made ornaments. Our tree has lots of these beautiful crosses all over it, and I love them!

Well, may you have a blessed night and a blessed weekend! I am ready for a hot supper with the family, not to mention dear daughter is baking cookies as I type! Can't wait to have one with my evening coffee! Yum!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

"Rescue Me"

Meet the One who totally captures my heart and attentions:

--- my Knight in Shining Armor ---
The only One who causes me to rise above everything in life
that has attempted to pull me under!
He alone causes me to rise above!

Do YOU need to be rescued by His power, His authority -- His very essence!?
His skills are unmatched!

LORD, I love You so!

Monday, November 8, 2010

More Encouragement Through Song...

I discovered this great song on a friend's website this morning. I'll share more about her website later, but for now, I wanted to pass the song on for all those out there who feel like giving up -- Don't!

Have a listen and be encouraged! Love to you!


Sunday, November 7, 2010

"Help Me, Lord"

To love as Jesus loves means a death to self. I want to reach out to those who are feeling such a death overtake you... you are not alone.

"In your relationship with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; rather, He made Himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant....and being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to death - even death on a cross. Therefore, God exalted Him to the highest place....and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Do everything without grumbling. Therefore, my dear friends, ....continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose."
Phil 2: 5-13

Hugs to those hurting this morning......

Friday, November 5, 2010


Traditions are a fine thing, a fine thing indeed.

One of our family traditions is that every year we go to a particular holiday event. It is always scheduled within the first few days of November to usher in the season. A few years back we decided it would be special to allow each of our children to pick out a new ornament for our family room Christmas tree. The event is always much anticipated! Well this year was no exception. I thought I would share the picks of this year with you. If you care to, you can click on the individual pictures to enlarge them.

I just had a thought. I think I will share an ornament off our family room tree each Friday until Christmas Eve. That will be won't it!?

Have a precious weekend!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bug Bite

I have been bit by the Holiday Bug -- the non-commercial variety bug. It's the only bug bite I like! ;o) Thanksgiving and Christmas, oh how I appreciate all that you represent!

Even as I sing praises of thanksgiving for the season that is upon us, I know there are those out there who struggle through this pending season. My heart goes out to you!
I pray with Him you find the spiritual moxie to steer and to speak to your emotions, instead of letting them steer and speak to you. Please know you will be on my mind, in my heart, and covered by my prayers....truly.

May we all snuggle into Him in deeper measure this season!

Hugs and blessings to you all!