Saturday, January 22, 2011

Just a little road trip... shotgun!

I bought a journal at an artisan market when I was living in Santiago, Chile.  It was beautiful.  Handmade.  Leather.  And big.  Four hundred pages.  I know because I numbered them, for curiosity's sake.  It took me 4 and 1/2 years to fill up the first two hundred pages.  Only 9 months to finish the rest.

I spent about an hour flipping back.   Re-living, re-feeling, drawing a map of this journey from Then to Now.  So much time.  So much life.  So much change.  Being stuck in Then for so long, not knowing where to go next, seeing no way out, I could never have imagined the road that led to Now.  Looking back, I was able to see how far He's brought me.  How completely He's transformed me.  What a journey!

He is so patient, so diligent, so careful.  He has refined me in all this time since Then.  The time has been, at moments, painful.  The refining has been gentle, slow, full of purpose.  I am still wrestling with questions and doubts about my own ability.  But my hope is forever in Him.  My peace rests in His promises.  My proof is found in the journey to Now, in the great distance He has brought me.  This journey is forging a testimony that didn't exist back Then.

Where will this lead?  Where will He take my heart next?  I know I can't stay here... in Now.  Besides, I am excited about what lies on the road to Tomorrow.  Challenge.  Opportunity.  More time.  More refining.  The journey continues.  And my Creator walks beside me.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Snow happy, snow fun!

Winter finally came!  It was cold and rainy when we left for church yesterday morning.  As we were leaving church, the rain became big snowflakes.  And by the time we got home from lunch, the ground was completely hidden.  It snowed big and long.  About 4 inches total.  Not too shabby for Texas.

I'm not sure who loves snow more... me or Dakota.  We had a blast obliterating the winter wonderland scene in the backyard.  Now it's a white, slushy mess, but "snow" worth it!

And p.s. - thanks for bearing with me as I play around with my new camera (!) and learn how to make awesome videos with corny soundtracks.  Can't help it.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

You're invited!

I love a good party.  Birthday parties are the best.  Especially my birthday party.  But any party will do, really.  As long as there's cake.  Or peanut butter pie.  The worst, though, is having a party that no one comes to.  I tried to throw myself a party today.  A pity party.  No one came.  Then it hit me... pity parties would be so much more awesome if a few other people will show up.  Consider this your invitation.

Let me start at the beginning.  Rob got Jes a Kinect for Christmas, along with a really groovy dancing game.  It plays a song.  Breaks down the moves.  Has you feeling like a pro in no time.  I'm sure you've seen the commercials.  I caught on pretty fast the first time I played.  I got 4 stars!  Then Jes pointed out that I looked like I was doing a working out instead of dancing.  What can I say, we can't change what we are.

Since I've obviously mastered the dancing game (one could even go as far as calling me a hot dance biscuit), I played a new game today yesterday.  A sports game.  Track and field, to be exact.  I was running hurdles when the accident happened.  I threw my arms back to jump a hurdle when--OWWWWWWW!--I jammed my finger into the arm of the couch.  Don't ask me how it happened, all I know is that one second I was in first place and in the next I was crumpled on the floor in pain.  My sisters didn't care one single bit.  They laughed at my pain.  They said I was being dramatic (Dramatic?  Me?).  As I was wallowing around in agony, trying to make the best of a bad situation by hosting a little party, they rolled their eyes and looked the other way.  They didn't even care when it started to swell.  I wasn't looking for some serious sympathy, just an acknowledgement of my intense, not-at-all exaggerated pain.  Nothing.

All that to say, there's plenty of room at the party if you wanna come.  No cake, but I can guarantee lots of dancing!  Luckily, dancing, unlike typing, doesn't hurt my poor-little-jammed-finger. 

Friday, January 7, 2011

A New Year's revelation.

What if we could know exactly what this year holds for us?  Would anything change?  What if we believed Jesus when he warns, "I'm sending you out like sheep among wolves.  You'll be persecuted, mocked, hated, and devoured.  But here's your chance, bear witness to my name!  Endure and you'll be saved!"?  Would it still be worth it?  What if we believed God when he says, "I know the plans I have for you.  A future and a hope.  Look for me with all your heart.  I will be found by you!"?  Would that be enough to make a difference?  Imagine...

Total abandon of self.  Freedom in trust.  Boldness through faith.  Courage to witness.  Wisdom from the Spirit.  Joy in persecution.  Sold out.  Poured out.  Crying out.

Finding rest in His promises.  Alive with the Message.  Breathing the air of Truth.  Feasting on the Word.  Quenched by Living Water.  Overwhelmed by Love.  Overflowing with compassion.

A strong will.  A unified spirit.  A barbaric heart.  Facing sorrow.  Embracing pain.  Challenging death.  Unafraid.  Unashamed.  Unshaken.

Refined by fire.  Cleansed with blood.  Redeemed.  Renewed.  Reborn.

A new Creation.