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Showing posts from 2008

Highlights of 2008

It's New Years eve and my favorite thing to do on this "holiday" is to reflect over the past year and journal what I see. I like new beginnings, I like clear turning points, I like to see the footsteps behind me and even though some of the ground I covered was rough and jagged, I discover that I did grow, God was faithful and Good through it. My heart is always encouraged. So, tonight I thought I would journal some of the highlights of 2008:

One of the top most things that I experienced was the best teaching experience I have had in my teaching career. I remembering trembling with fear as I approach the last teaching assignment in a new, rough school and asking people to pray for me. The whole experience was phenomenal. Everything from God providing me a place to stay as the commute was really far and the gas was really expensive, the students I taught, the subject I taught, the friends God put around me, the beautiful mornings driving to school and the new friends…

Ten Shekels and a Shirt - Paris Reidhead

This is an awesome reminder of what our lives should be all about - what an AWESOME GLORIOUS God we serve...He is SO worthy. May we Celebrate Him forever!

14,000 Things to be Happy about!

Tonight I enjoyed going shopping with a friend. She and I shared the same disdain for shopping so we made a good pair - IN & OUT, "what's the next item on the list?" okay, list done! I have been called "the purpose driven shopper" - let's make this as fast and painless as possible please!

Our last stop was a notable book store and as she found her last item on her list, I meandered around; a bookstore is an pleasant and interesting place to wait for someone. As I made my way through the calendar section, getting a few laughs from a "BAD CAT" calendar - (hilarious!), my eye caught a little coffee table book called: "14,000 things to be Happy about!" It was sweet and simple and gave me an idea of this post! So here are a few things, but not nearly as many as 14,000, I found to be happy about JUST today!!

--hanging clothes on the line, a cup of italian coffee, two handsome toddlers to love on, sunshine, flip-flops, the sound of th…

Time to Update!

Whew! I am just taking a seat after making some headway on a few of my house projects this morning. The house is quiet, except for Kenny G playing Christmas tunes. I have laundry to hang out before the morning gets too far along but I thought I would jot a line here to say Hello to my friends who check on me now and then =)

I finished my first semester! Woo-hoooo!! I have a goal oriented mindset so when a goal is reached I like to cheer! And I also realize that i have about four more semesters to go, I wish it would not be so long - but when you think about it in numbers like "4" - it doesn't seem so long! Thank you all for your prayers. God used this last semester to work in my mind and my heart. It is all good.

Right now - the Christmas Holidays are here and it truly is fun! I don't have ONE piece of Christmas decor up! Not yet anyhow, I tried to get Kitty to get some things done but, well, you know, she doesn't always carry out my wishes.... Somehow sh…

Tasting the Christmas Season

Hey everyone!

This is a moment by moment update blog entry! I am sitting in the mall, next to Starbucks, so tempted to buy a $4 coffee but am holding out as i am meeting a friend for lunch and i have good coffee at home. Trying to be wise with my money....besides, i really DO want to buy for others instead of me. I have a problem in that I tend to begin to think of the many things I want on my Christmas wish instead of what others may desire....the kid in me is still alive! So, I confess the voice inside to say "I want this, I need that, I would love to have that..." IT is about GIVING...not receiving!

:-) Ah, well, I am still growing! It is festive feeling here in the mall; people meandering by (one sweet soul dropped me a mint on my table as i was engrossed in my computer screen! the smallest things bless so much!), the music, the decorations, the cute kids dressed up for their picture with Santa (he has a REAL beard!), and just everything. I like to just sit and tak…

Procrastinating

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Iy-yi-yi - Not really anything huge on my mind but I am simply procrastinating! I have one final project for the semester to finish and I have been sitting here for more than four hours - successfully avoiding wrapping my brain around the objective of completing it. THOUGH I can say, I did move on a part of it in the last 30 minutes!

I can totally relate to kids who have ADD or ADHD; it takes me a bit of unwinding and de-cluttering to focus and do! My roommate use to laugh at me when I would start working on an assignment; I would make several trips out to the livingroom and kitchen to do the oddest of things...get a snack, vacuum, do some exercises, organize my cd's, floss my teeth...LOL; then after an hour or two, I would begin engaging in my work. Once i get there, it is truly a feast of learning.

So this is what I have done in the last four hours: lit the candles in the house, played different cd's (of course I spent time rummaging through boxes and storage to find …

Braveheart

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Braveheart is a powerful movie. It pretty much leaves you speechless...I like movies like that. I just spent this rainy Sunday afternoon watching it. It makes me feel the urgency to truly live, not compromising for temporary pleasure but to keep my eyes and heart set on the eternal. One line, probably the most powerful and underlying message of the movie is also my favorite, "Your heart is free; have the courage to follow it."

"He whom the son sets free is free indeed...."- Jesus Christ

Missing Fellowship

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My heart ached tonight as I drove home from work, the sky was almost dark and I realized I had left my house almost 12 hours earlier - the sun was just peeping over the horizon then, now it was gone altogether. This is the 5th Sunday I have been unable to attend church. While I was in Florida last week, I realized my schedule would be causing this and I started to think about finding some sort of fellowship that met on Sunday evenings or Saturday evenings. My soul is hungry for fellowship, hearing the Word and worshipping with my brothers and sisters in Jesus.

So, I am asking you to pray for me as I seek a New Body of believers in Columbia. I have been attending my brother's church when I am able but for some reason I think this obstacle is something God may be allowing to direct me to a different place. I will continue to attend that church as I am able. Yet even in attending there, pray I find kindred hearts and like-minded brothers and sisters. I was so embraced and lo…

Fabulous Surprise Florida Trip

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I can't let too many days go by without sharing a great treat God blessed me with...a trip to Florida!

After being here in SC for almost six months, I was feeling like a tumble weed. God heard a very sad cry a few weeks ago for something special to perk me up. I had no idea a trip to Florida would be His answer and gift!

A dear friend was in need of someone to drive her to Florida; I offered my services. It was a blessing to her - but I was the one who received the best blessing! Fall in Florida may not have all the brilliant colors of the north, but it is about the best time of year to visit! The temperature is perfect, and well, it is just great - especially when you get to visit some of the most wonderful people in the world - or at least of the ones i have met so far and stick you toes in the sand and surf of the Atlantic and not lose them to frostbite!

After dropping my friend off at her destination, the open road was mine. I did a loop-de-loop through Central Florida…

Finding Grace

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Recently I have been working on memorizing some passages for one of my classes in seminary. Hebrews 4:15-16 has been one I have focused on in the last few days. Grace is something I gaining a new perspective on; I was saved as a young child and never experienced a radical shift from BC days to AC days. There is only so much a three year old can grasp - I just knew I wanted to go to Heaven and you had to have Jesus in your heart to get there - So i asked Him in!

So, God has been teaching me about grace. It has been a wonderful lesson. As I meditated on this verse in Hebrews, I thought about the words, "to receive mercy and find grace...." To find grace, like a hidden treasure we needed for Life, and found with delight! I like that; to find grace! It tastes really good. As I walked this morning in the crisp fall air - it seemed this was exemplified as I drank in the beauty of the brilliant reds, oranges, and yellows of the leaves. Simply breathtaking; that's what Gra…

Pawn has been moved

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Many are in a place of disbelief this morning or sadness or just numbness, some are excited for the political page that has turned. I was pushing for the McCain ticket. I have to admit, I too feel a little apprehension; what will our country look like in four years? 8 years? All of this makes me feel thankful our country is the way it is: we have a power few others have. Just as Jesus said in the parables of the Kingdom; the smallest of seeds grows into the most majestic of trees! Great things come from small beginnings.

I am actually a bit excited this morning. We are at a point where we must not look to our leaders for freedom, we must look to the Lord. I know many, many who already do this - PRAISE THE LORD! But it is time we pull in tighter and pray more fervently; a time of refining has come. God is our King. The times are in His Hands; We can rejoice in that! We are in interesting times and that is exciting!

Also, I look at the annuals of history....and see the MANY many…

Getting Untangled

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"Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."
This picture reminds me of what God has been teaching me in the last few weeks - that of trusting Him, receiving His Grace and resting in His hands. It seems that the most basic of lessons in our faith are the ones we forget so quickly - Hebrews 12 has been ringing in my ears this last week as I am enjoying His Grace and Love in a fresh way. I am realizing how quickly I like to take over and run ahead or in a direction that isn't what God has directed, then i find my self in a tangled mess. God's way is perfect; I need to just rest there! I pray I don't forget this lesson too quickly and just rest like this little kitty before getting all tangled up!

"He who the son sets free is free indeed!"

PS - If you stay on this blog long enough you will hear (if you allow the music to play) a few great old songs....lately I…

A Surprising Glance

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Yesterday I enjoyed almost a whole day at home. Now, that may not sound exciting to some but when your schedule is in "weird" mode - no rhyme or reason, a day to just be at home is such a gift! I love being at home; I love traveling as well but the womanly part of me that is a God given domestic side is alive!

Being that clouds were rolling in, eventually bringing rain made it even more a "stay at home" kind of day. I had plenty of studying to keep me busy; one great thing about being in seminary is that 99% of my school work is geared toward studying about God and His word! What can be better than that? I have to admit I wasn't really doing well on focusing on my school work but i was enjoying God! So as i was doing this, and pondering (and procrastinating) some projects I took some time to look back over this past year on my blog. I found some unexpected encouragement.

Last spring I wrote about what God was doing as I taught school, worked and lived th…

Brandon Heath -

You may have heard this yesterday if you were in the Wal-mart parking lot as i drove through! It is a powerful song and one with a groove! Love sharing songs and messages that change me, move me or make me cry out to God saying, "YES, DO it in me Lord!"

To Be or not to Be

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I am enjoying a book that I have to read for an assignment. It is called TrueFaced. It is about trusting God and living out of who God says I am and not trying to BE what I think I should be.

Here is one foundational concept shared in the book: you are on a road and you come to a point in which you have to make a choice to go one of two ways. Pointing one way, printed on the arrow it says "Please God", pointing the opposite direction it says "Trust God". You have to choose one. Upon first reading this, I thought, BOTH of these are good - How can you choose ONE? Obviously this required me to delve deeper: Pleasing God is a GREAT thing, I want to do this! Trusting God is what He wants us to do too....

The book goes on to describe where each of these roads lead to: one to a place where I am striving to BE something, the other is a place that you live out of the truth of WHO GOD SAYS YOU ARE: Trusting what He has said to be TRUE.

Now, this is not something ne…

Being Understood

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When i was a teenager, i loved playing volleyball(I still love a good game of V-ball). It may have had something do to with the HUGE crush i had on my pastor's son whom i was not allowed to "date" but would see with certainty on Saturday night: volleyball night. Somehow this really helped me grow in my volleyball skills *wink* - It really was a sport i excelled in but was too insecure to actually go out for the team in my public high school.

I didn't think my father really cared or noticed that i had a sports talent, i believed he was more concerned over the fact i was infatuated with someone he felt was not right for me.

As i worked through those tumultuous days, I often felt estranged from my dad. He didn't understand me. But one Christmas during this time, my dad did something that changed that: he bought me a volleyball. A VOLLEYBALL! Somehow, this spoke VOLUMES to my heart. He DID see me; He did understand. He saw there was something I EXCELLED in and He gav…

Unspectacular Details

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Been Tagged - Here it goes (I am not sure how to just put "Melanie...")
here are the rules:
1. link to the person that tagged you.
2. mention the rules.
3. tell six yet boring, unspectacular details about yourself.
3. tag six other blogger's by linking to them.
4. go to each person's blog and leave them a comment that lets them know they have been tagged.

here are six boring, unspectacular details about me.

1. I have a clogged tub.
2. I forgot to floss my teeth last night
3. My hair is a mess right now
4. My precious kitty is sick today :-(
5. I like to hang laundry on my clothesline!
6. I gave myself a manicure; my fingernails look clean and nice :-)

I tag Anne C., Elisabeth C., Elisabeth S., Christi S., and Kelcee!

Daisies

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I want some of these in my house!

True Friend

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You know that song, "I am a friend of God"...i use to really not like it. Not sure why, it just was one of those songs that rubbed the wrong way. Maybe it was that very part, saying, " I am a friend of God,"...I know Christ calls us 'Friends" but can i say I am a friend of God?

A few days ago I saw a skit. A Man was sitting on a bench and several "friends" came by. He looked forward to each friend but each one came by either unfocused, busy, not engaging with their "Friend" on the bench, until the last one who actually sat down and had a real conversation with the Man.

It was a simple skit but God grabbed my attention. He wants me to talk to Him as a Friend. He longs for me to talk to Him about my day, my concerns, my thoughts, my joys, my struggles - He wants to go with me through my lonely times, through my fear that I will be alone forever on this earth, that i may never know a man's love or marriage or children - He wan…

Thank You for Your Comments

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To those who drop me comments I want to say Thank You! The power of a word: it can give life or take it away. Kind words are like using multiplication in life, in love. So, Thank you to my "fellow Trekkers," it truly means so much!

Rainy Days

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Hope you can see what this picture is - my kitty snuggled up in the corner of the chair I am sitting in and a cup of tea; both of which make rainy days so cozy!
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A little different angle...

On the way to AFTER...

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Here is my livingroom - the window treatments still need updating, the lace will have to do for now. The walls are "lunar Tide" a very soft green, a fresh green.

First Day of Fall

Time flies. Here I sit on my comfy red couch, enjoying the new look of my living room - my dad painted last night after we worked all morning on stripping the wallpaper. I should have guessed he would have it painted by the time I returned from my night shift this afternoon. It looks GREAT - much better than the pink/peach walls with border and wallpaper. The trim is white - it simply looks softer and bigger. I still need to put window treatments up and hang pictures but i am happy with the way the paint turned the room around! I will post pictures later.

I am also enjoying having my niece here for the night. She is presently two - and very verbal. She is such a joy. This new phase of toddlerhood has come so fast! It seems just yesterday she was such a baby! Time does fly.

God has blessed me in my studies as well. More than an academic school, CIU makes it very clear that it is about being transformed within before we can make a difference without. Transformed people transf…

Kittens and Kiddos

My employer has been keeping two sweet kittens in her office for a few weeks. I had to drop by yesterday, to my joy and pleasure, i played with the little furballs for a few minutes before going next door to visit my chiropractor. As I was about to leave, I saw a bundle of children pass by the office window, I heard the kids exclaim "ohhhh, look! Kittens!"

As i entered the doctors waiting room, there were the same sweet faces of the children who had passed the office window not two minutes ago. I was very impressed at how well behaved these four kids were - They were all under the age of 10 or 11. Each of them were quietly looking at a magazine or book the doctor had available in the waiting room. As I waited I made small talk with the father and the kids, they were very cordial and mannerly. I learned that they had been missionaries and homeschooled their kids; six in all! I felt a warm-ness towards the kids; they were very likable! Soon, it was time for them to depa…

Here In Your Presence

Wow - this is really good!

François de Salignac de la Mothe-Fénelon

Hidden Treasures! This morning I have been reading from Devotional Classics. My heart was so truly blessed and challenged I had to share! These are a few of the words of the many I highlighted....(oh, i pulled these quotes from an online source, my book is a "revised" edition so it is in an easier contemporary tone - these classic tones give our brains more of a challenge to chew on!)

These came from his work called "Christian Perfection:"

"Christian Perfection is not that rigorous, tedious, cramping thing that many imagine. It demands only an entire surrender of everything to God from the depths of the soul, and the moment this takes place, whatever is done for Him becomes easy. They who are God’s without reserve, are in every state content; for they will only what He wills, and desire to do for Him whatever he desires them to do; they strip themselves of everything, and in this nakedness find all things restored an hundred fold. Peace of conscience, liberty…

Sarah McLachlan-Ordinary Miracle

A few years ago a newer version of Charlotte's Web was released. I love this story and when i heard Sarah McLachlan singing this song in the T-day parade a month before the release of the movie, i was in love! I could NOT wait the see the new movie, nor could i wait till the release of the soundtrack - music has a way of grabbing my heart and this song did that!

As a Daughter of the King, this song fits even more perfectly. We, of all people, can celebrate our Creator for "ordinary" miracles - GIFTS of joy and life and beauty every single day. Tonight, I am not necessarily in a the best mindset or mood - actually I am kinda hungry for some good company, but i needed to remind myself of some of "My favorite things" and tell my Soul - "Why are you downcast? Put YOUR hope IN GOD!" So, here ya go ole soul of mine, God has given you so much to be thankful for, so Get to rejoicing over His Ordinary, (shall we say - EVERYDAY CONTINUAL UNFAILING LOVE) Mir…

Still We Trust

I attended a retreat today and was tremendously blessed by this poem. The author is not listed but here are the powerful words...

Still We Trust
Still will we trust, though earth seems dark and dreary,
And the heart faint beneath His chastening rod;
Though rough and steep our pathway, worn and weary,
Still will we trust in God!

Our eyes see dimly till by faith anointed.
And our blind choosing brings us grief and pain;
Through Him alone Who hath our way appointed,
We find our peace again.

Choose for us, God! Nor let our weak preferring
Cheat our poor souls of good Thou has designed;
Choose for us, God! Thy wisdom is unerring,
And we are fools and blind.

Let us press on, in patient self denial,
Accept the hardship, shrink not from the loss;
Our portion lies beyond the hour of trial,
Our crown beyond the cross.

Labor Day

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Hello All!

It's my first day to have slept in my new house all alone! My parents have been here helping me get this house in good safe condition. I am SO thankful for my dad who knows how to fix about anything. He has spent the last two weeks putting up outside lights, rewiring in many areas, basically fixing much of the infrastructure of the house so it is more energy efficient and safe.  Being their only daughter, keeping me safe is a high priority on their list - even when I am 35! (HUH! YEP, i had a birthday last month, I am coming to grips with 35; it seems so grown up!)
Anyhow, here are some pictures of our work! We painted the utility room white and the shelves we painted a mocha coffee color - thanks to the OPPS discount paint at Home Depot it only cost me $10 for two gallons of mocho colored paint!


Last night I enjoyed some laughs with a friend who has also recently purchased her first house.  We laughed about all the items you suddenly need when you move into a house tha…

Closing Ceremony

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I am enjoying living close to my niece!  Here we are enjoying the closing olympic ceremony!  We were hooting and hollering together!

Moving In

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What a Week! Here are some pictures of my moving in process....MANY THANKS to the MANY Hands who helped me! Even the LITTLE ones! Note pictures....

More Than I can Imagine

"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen!" 
This verse has been the theme over the last week or so.  God is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us!  This adventure of moving and finding a job and a house and settling into a new season has been just that: an Adventure!  
A week or so ago the Lord gave me Psalm 113 - He is the one who raises the poor and settles us into our homes.  Trying to buy my first house is making a twist in the process but an even better situation has opened up for me!  Yes, more than I asked for or imagined! I will post pictures as soon as i can!  
Closing will take place within the week - hopefully Friday.  I travel to Florida Friday to meet some friends who are helping me move my earthly possessions to my…

Too Much Fun

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This past weekend i was blessed beyond words! God orchestrated a wonderful weekend!  As i saw my weekend literally come together - I marveled at how God likes to hear us laugh and just enjoy Life!  God blessed me several ways: First I was able to spend time with friends who fill me up!  Second, it was perfectly put into place by Him!  I am pretty good at manipulating things and I am trying to learn to rest and sit back and follow God's lead; the events of the past weekend He helped me and blessed me by simply allowing Him to lead, and me following!
First, I attended a wedding Saturday night.  I really didn't feel like I knew the couple well, but it was within family ties so i attended.  Weddings are fun and you get to share in a celebration of Love and Joy!  I enjoyed going with friends, dressing up and celebrating with everyone.  
Sunday I worked with someone who needed some TLC in the morning; I enjoyed helping and I think I met my next new member of my family: a labrador-husk…

Brighter and Brighter!

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The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. Proverbs 4:18

A friend of mine shared this verse with me many years ago, since then it has become one of my treasured verses. Jesus said in John 10:10 that he came to bring not just life, but abundant life! This morning, my heart has been full of thanksgiving for God's obvious abundant provision for me. These tender feet of mine have covered some difficult terrain over the past few years of my journey and at times it seemed i felt the harshness would do me in, my soul was downcast and the dark clouds loomed over my heart and head. I must confess at times i found it hard to say " God is good"and  hope was far from my heart but i am experiencing a time of refreshing.  I sense his pleasure as I step into the turn in my journey, I am in the right place.

I think "life abundant" doesn't consist of comfortable pillows and cozy walkways, but of growing in…

Over doing it!

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This morning I power walked 3 miles! I enjoy running and staying active but with my moving and unpredictable schedule lately, getting in a run or even a workout video is hard to do. Needless to say, when i don't get my regular exercise in, i begin to feel a bit slobbish! Plus, my diet has been all over the place, not having my own kitchen i can't be as picky about what i eat. I just thank the Lord for the food that i am blessed to receive - i try not to eat out too much, especially when i am watching my pennies.

So, this morning, i had the time and energy to get outside and enjoy a vigorous walk. It was too hot to run. I pushed it! It always feels good after a good workout but i think i may have overdone it! My legs are sore as if i ran 10 miles! No pain, no gain they say! (Who is "they" anyway?)

I have so much to be thankful for - God has provided me a place to stay, food to eat, work to have a paycheck, and health to enjoy each day! It is beautiful in Sou…

No Fear Zone

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God truly did some work on me on this retreat this past week. The Lord showed me that fear has a bigger grip on me than i realize and i want to walk in greater freedom. Enough of being crippled with fear, i could see myself, like Much-Afraid in Hinds Feet in High Places (book we were reading in preparation of this retreat), at a precipice, an impass of sorts, going back and forth on a ledge. I could not see a way down, or past or how I got there! We spent time praying over this; I was prayed for and ministered to muchly! Lots of ministry happened this weekend. As this particular time of ministry met me, a sister in the Lord read this passage from Isaiah 54:
With a little wrath I hid My face from you for a moment;
But with everlasting kindness I will have mercy on you,”
Says the LORD, your Redeemer.
9 “ For this is like the waters of Noah to Me;
For as I have sworn
That the waters of Noah would no longer cover the earth,
So have I sworn
That I would no…

Retreat Time

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Psalm 84 speaks of the lovely dwelling place of our Lord and the psalmist speaks of his longing to be there!  Through Christ, the mystery of God in us is revealed.  We are the Temple of the Holy Spirit - what a profound truth to meditate upon!  Yet I personally find a need in me to pull away from the stresses of life, to a quiet, lovely place, to meet with God and to be encouraged by His truth and to be with people who long for Him as well, who have been in places of this journey that I am crawling through now, who have wisdom to help me walk through with greater confidence and joy, to strengthen me to press on and up.  We were not meant to walk this life alone.  So, though i meet with My Lord each day, i love it when i can literally pull away and escape with sisters in Christ and be covered with love, encouragement, good food, laughter, and shared tears.  It is one of the most precious treasures of this life!

So, tomorrow, my sister in love and i head to the mountains!  I look forwar…

You were called to be FREE

Galatians 5:1 "It is for FREEDOM that Christ has set you free! Stand firm! (vs 2)" Obviously, it is good to read the whole chapter of Galatians to get what Paul is talking about. It is a good day to do it! We are FREE to love, to forgive, to walk in righteousness, to walk with our God! What a glorious FREEDOM this is! We are FREE from sin, and death! Happy Independence day!

AMAZING

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God Is AWESOME! Yes, He has provided me a JOB!!! AND i start tomorrow!!! YIPPEEEEE!!! AND it will allow me to close on my house much sooner!!! PRAISE THE LORD!

A Good Day

I am sitting in a little deli in my hometown of Melrose. I just finished of a yummy grilled veggie wrap.

I woke up at 3:30 AM Sunday morning and was unable to go back to sleep. As i lay there - after putting my two year old niece back in her bed since she had rolled off her little bed (the thud was probably what originally woke me!) - I realized my week would increasingly get busy, with the possibility of a job starting up in Columbia, SC. I knew I needed to get back to Melrose to pack up my room and my earthly belongings so get it ready to move up to SC. So, i hopped up as quietly as i could and shoved my toothbrush and toothpaste in my purse, popped my contacts in, and headed South.

As i drove, it was still dark and i was happy to be up to see the morning miracle of dawn! I also enjoyed a moment of thankfulness; being single i have the freedom of doing what i was doing - spontaneously jumping in my car, with as little packed as ever, and heading out! Oh the bliss of singlene…

Faith Booster

"Does He who implanted the ear not hear? Does he who formed the eye not see? Does he who disciplines nations not punish? Does he who teaches man lack knowledge? The LORD knows the thoughts of man; he knows that they are futile...." Ps. 94:9-11

Such an Israelite am i...as soon as the going gets rough, "oh Lord why is it so hard!" This morning i rose early, greeted the sun and ran on one of my favorite running trails in Columbia.  It is a beautiful morning and the worries of yesterday are covered with New Mercies and prayer.  
God encouraged me this morning as i looked over some of my facebook contacts and a few other sites i visit regularly: I was reminded of some old friends who are HUGE in their faith and are living on the edge for the LORD.   
Several years ago i went out west with a good friend and her son.  One of our destinations was the GRAND CANYON.  We arrived just at sunset and we pulled over at one of many spectacular lookouts.  I have always been a little b…

Rocky part of the Journey

The moon is full tonight. i always love a full moon. The air is cool, and the sky is clear, the crickets are singing and i am enjoying the quiet stillness of the night.

I have been in South Carolina for over a week now and my journey is getting rocky. Tonight I felt the tinge of homesickness as I studied the path immediately ahead of me. I thought of friends at home and missed the comfortable security of my church and home there. Starting fresh is hard and i knew i would face these feelings as i prepared to part ways, but that doesn't make it any less painful. I have family here and a few friends, but it takes awhile to find a "nitch" that is mine. I know it will come but i am missing home tonight.

I am waiting on a job to materialize, then i will be able to make a move on my little house. I pray the job comes through by Friday then i can really be all here. So, please pray for my job. Today, i felt a peace over all the details, but my humanness wants to have a…

House Hunt

That show on TV makes house hunting look so easy..... Well, armed w/ good advice from AP, my dad and I have been combing the streets here in Columbia, SC. I have seen old, new, big, small...vinyl, wood, stone, brick...and whatever else may fall inbetween. It has only been a week but i felt the need to find something and get moved up here to my new abode.

"He will make the path smooth..." This seems to be wallpapered to the back of my brain...and i simply wanted to rest in Him. I have felt a little anxiety but in the midst of this week, one night in particular, i felt the tinges of worry pulling on my mind....and i spoke out: Lord, Thank you that You are my Shepherd, my Fortress, My Guide, and My Provider. The worry dissipated like fog on a hot day and things have been good since.

So, today....i made my first offer!! Yes, we literally stumbled across a little brick house in good proximity of school, and possibly work....and i see LOTS of wonderful potential; and it is …

Arrived Safely

It is HOT in South Carolina!!!! I think i have my first sunburn for the summer - but i did not get it at the beach! My dad is working on putting an irrigation system in my brother's yard - so since i am not getting much other exercise i decided i could sweat a little and help him do some digging....of course wearing my shorts and tank so i could get a little sun in the process!

I wanted to put a quick note down to thank you all for praying for me. This week and in the next few weeks i will be looking for a job and a place to live. Please pray that i find just the right place to be! I have a few ideas but want to keep my expectations in God's hands. I keep hearing that verse in my head "He has gone before and behind me..." so i keep praying, Lord, thank you that you have gone before me!! He will make the rough places smooth! I had a chance to share with my church why i am leaving my sweet church family. I believe the Lord blessed me as i shared. It was a sweet…

Hillsong - Adonai

I just came across this song by Hillsong - it just pretty much jumped out and GRABBED me - I LOVE IT! Enjoy!!!

Final Friday

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Wow! These last nine weeks of school have FLOWN! What a wonderful blessing it has been to be in this school, teaching history and Bible, getting to know my students and being surprised by the delight of it all! If you will look back at my first blog on this "challenge" i was pretty frightened of the unknowns...but thanks to lots of prayer and God's blessing, it has turned out to be one of the BEST teaching experiences i have ever had - How i praise the Lord!

I believe this is part of a healing time for me too. I have been teaching in some capacity for the last ten years or so, and to be honest, it has been hard! I know teaching is in my blood, but i would come home feeling so defeated, and unhappy. I remember thinking more than once, "this is just not for me!" This was just one of the dark battles i had fighting within me. Why could i not enjoy my work and walk in more happiness? Where was that fruit of the spirit? Was this a lesson on longsuffering? I…

Summer

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Summer is coming! Summer in Florida is HOT - Summer in South Carolina is HOT too! But, Summer means travel, vacation, lemonade, a more relaxed schedule...well, for most of us! I will be moving...hopefully by the end of June I will be unpacking in a new place....i am dreaming of a place with a yard, wood floors, lots of windows and room enough to entertain!

My students are ready for summer too - and i love the bittersweet goodbyes. All of a sudden, they come by your room, shuffle their feet in a quiet manner and shyly thank you for being their teacher....and then that wonderful light you KNOW was in them shines out, and i say YES! I see it! There is something VERY special about each one....something precious and worth waking up at 5 a.m., sweating over lesson plans and teaching from a full heart....YES, my students are worth it!

Summer brings a new season...for me a new turn. I look forward with anticipation, and today i enjoy wonderful peace in my heart. I feel full. And i an…

No Other Gods

Hey you all!

I just read about a study called "No Other Gods"...the LPM Blog is inviting us to join in for a summer study using this book. I am going to do it - anyone else want to join me and share comments and posts throughout the summer on this study? Visit the LPM Blog to find more if you want the "full scale" - My summer is unpredictable right now so i will do it solo unless i run into someone who is close, but the blog will provide a "meeting place." Anyhow, i thought it would be great! I will pick up my copy soon at LifeWay.

Leave a comment if you want to join me! IF not, leave one anyway and let me know who is looking at my blog...i have lots of hits and i often wonder, who found me from CANADA? or Europe? or...MONGOLIA (Hi Amanda - i know it is you!) ;-)

A Gentle Quiet Whisper

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Two weeks from now i will be in South Carolina - house hunting...job hunting. Moving. Part of me looks forward with great anticipation to the new challenges and opportunities that lay on the horizon - as BM said, "Your future is in front of you!" How exciting! I have a journeying heart and i enjoy adventures...Yet i am finding my roots have gotten deeper here in my present home and pulling them up is beginning to cause some pain and a little anxiety.

I confess, i have moments when i look around me and say, "what am i doing!" Things are going pretty well here, i feel secure here and quite comfortable...yet, i am following a call in my heart that has been there for a long time. I am stepping out into a new trail - one i have been eyeing since i was young. The Calling i believe God designed for me.

So inbetween exhilarating emotions that nearly make me want to fly to SC right now and a maternal pull to stay put, not wanting to uproot...i am learning to be still …

When one part of the Body weeps, we all weep

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My heart and prayers go to the Chapman family. Little Maria - though I am not a personal friend of the family - are brothers and sisters in Christ...and my heart is broken over this tragedy. She is with Jesus - laughing, washing dishes and dancing with Him...how we grieve her passing and i know the tears and hearts are deeply grieving in the Chapman home - We all love you and hold you tightly in our hearts as you are washed with grief.

Good Morning Lord!

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Another beautiful morning...it was such a blessing to me this morning to wake with a full heart and soul. My schedule lately and my accommedations have brought me growing opportunities. I praise HIM for His grace; sleeping on an air mattress is better than a hard floor but when a beautiful comfortable royal bed is offered instead of an air mattress, that is MOVING UP! (Literally!) My dear friend who is generously allowing me to camp out on her living room floor is gone for a few days - which is a bummer as i enjoy her company - but in her absense i get to sleep in her bed! It is amazing how a good mattress heeds a good nights rest! Rest DOES come from the LORD - and i love it when he gives it to me with a sweet bed! :-)

ALSO, i was able to spend some quality time in the Word last night...HOw wonderful to go to sleep with the Word marinating your heart. That is the perfect recipe for a good nights rest.

O Satisfy us early....

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The sun is coming up earlier these days and I relish the morning as i make my way to work. I have to rise at 5 a.m. and one of my favorite parts of the day is that first glimpse of morning...as the sky begins to change hues as the sun makes its way over the horizon. This morning the Lord blessed me with a REAL treat! My route to work faces me west so i have to peek into my rearview mirror to catch the sky behind me....but this morning, a full beautiful moon was lingering in the western sky! It was breathtaking! I literally was giddy with excitement, i could not contain it! All i could do is just praise My Creator for His handiwork!

He is like the Wind...

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As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.
Ecclesiates 11:5

This was the "Verse of the Day" on Biblegateway.com today. It reminded me of something i read the last few days. When we walk with the Spirit, in His Wind...we walk in freedom. I have been meditating on that...the context of that truth was in a paragraph about having boundaries in our lives. Sometimes boundaries seem to keep us from things but really boundaries are safeguards and actually, paradoxically, bring us MORE freedom.

Going Deeper with this - remembering Jesus' words to Nicodemus! Jesus was trying to explain a heavenly concept to Nic - being born of God, it is a Spirit thing, not physical - How beautiful is that! I was marveling last night as a friend and i discussed the state of our society...it seems like it is going down hill, fear would be easy to give into, YET, God works in m…

I love Fridays!!!

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The week has been a WEEK! Good mostly, some struggles within, but victories overall! Love my students more - I am so thankful God has blessed me with a joy in my heart over my students and my classes. What a difference it makes.

Another thing i am very thankful for - and noticing VERY much - God's Grace over my sleeping arrangements. For those who know me know i am pretty protective over my bedtime and sleep time. FOR YEARS - especially when i am teaching - i have kept a strict bedtime for myself and if that time gets threatened, i have feelings of panic!! So, i was a little concerned when i knew i would be living like a nomad and sleeping in different places. I love my BED. BUT, wow, God has totally covered me w/ grace - and i find i am not even worried about my bedtime, i feel so relaxed; THIS IS A SERIOUS INTERVENTION FROM THE LORD! I love it!

Going home for the weekend is a wonderful way to truly step away from your work week. Seriously, Friday's present me with t…

Some Evening Thoughts

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I have been in a bubble a long time. Ever hear that expression? I have been in a bubble of conservative, christian thinking most of my life. I see it as a blessing - I have grown up under godly parents who taught me the Scriptures and walked a lifestyle of loving and serving God. As i grew up i took this for granted. I did attend a public school and i heard kids shamelessly spout off things that i would not even whisper in my house. Purity is a good, BEAUTIFUL and precious thing.

I have been working in a secular realm over the past several months. It is a rude awakening. It is painful. It breaks my heart. Then i think, this breaks GOD's heart. As i have been teaching in the public schools, i am realizing more and more the darkness of our society. Sure, there are some very good ambitions out there: save the earth - but at the cost of demeaning the value of human life? Relay for Life - fight cancer - but what about the cancer of the soul? It tears me up. But, people d…

Good Effort

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I found this to be quite amusing! It is quite a sad fact that our sin nature pushes us to see how far we can go....and even though we live in a wonderful country, i get discouraged when i see how sick our society is getting....but this is very cute. I read this on Fox New's website, a northern town tried to use comedy to get people to obey the law - one of the simplest ones: STOP at the stop signs...unfortunately, they have to take these down but i thought it was a valiant effort! A sense of humor goes a long way! Go check it out on FOXnews website - there are more!

Loneliness

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Whether you are surrounded by a crowd or all alone in a room, we all deal with the lonely monster. He creeps up on all of us from time to time. Obviously, being single, i am alone a lot. I have tried to allow my alone times to be special times between the Lord and I. I have grown to treasure "our" times alone. I have been warned that this will be an obstacle when i get married (not sure when or if that will happen), to learn to share "my" alone time.

Last night i felt a shadow of loneliness float across my blue sky; it is dark sometimes and i honestly don't like it. As with any battle, we have to recognize it as a battle, and hide behind our armor. Sometimes i do it faster and better than others. Of late, though, i am learning something about myself - the needs of the heart, mind and soul. God said Himself it is not good for man to be alone. I think when He used the word "man" He was referring to mankind - men and women. So, it is not go…

The Little Things

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I woke up happy this morning...something felt smooth and pretty on my hands and feet - My fingernails and toes were polished with perfection and it just makes a girl happy to feel pretty! I laughed as i mused at how girls are.... Something like a pedicure just really does make a woman feel good. (If you can get over paying someone else to paint your toes....which is hard for me sometimes; i always feel a little guilty having someone wash my feet....hmm, it does cause you to reflect about Jesus washing the disciples feet...) Anyhow, that is a rabbit trail...one i want to write soon.

For those trekking along w/ me - the last few weeks i have been camping out in Jacksonville, as i am teaching at a high school near here. I am staying w/ a friend who has a lovely apartment and a very cool coffee maker....that made me smile too this morning! Something about the smell of fresh coffee brewing that just wakes you up in a real nice way!

One more thing made me smile this morning...Jacksonville is…

Showers of Blessing

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I began to title this entry as "My cup overflows"....but i ran across this picture...and i decided i like it! Dancing in the rain is FUN - if you have never tried it, it is totally worth getting wet.

I am so thankful for My Cup does overflow, and i danced in my showers of blessing this weekend. Sometimes when we get to the end of our work week, we just want to crash at home...but a Sabbath is meant to refresh us...so, yes, resting does come in the form of sleep but refreshment comes from the Lord (as does true rest!). I was refreshed this weekend by being around my family, and loved ones...and going to church...and being a part of Church...and Hearing from the Lord. I heard someone say, a good day is when we have heard from the Lord. No matter what happens, if we receive from Him, it is always GOOD! So i rejoice...in the day, in the weekend, in my family and friends and mostly in My Lord! He is so good to me!

All my blessings were wonderful this weekend...one totally caught …

It's Friday!

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I am SO glad that America created a 5 day work week. Back before the 1920's, the work week was longer.... Can you believe working 12-14 hour days, 6 days a week? Though I do know of a few occupations that have insane work hours....and there are Many people out there who WORK hard; God really knew what He was doing when He installed ONE day to rest. That is good! Thank You Lord! So....even though my weekend looks full, I do get to sleep a few extra hours and enjoy a more relaxed schedule for about 48 hours...Let's slow down this weekend, and enjoy a Sabbath day. I pray YOU enjoy a wonderful weekend - I will enjoy a cup of tea some where in my next 48 hours!

New Friends

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I had such a wonderful time last night! I love the longer days Spring brings us - and i love living in Florida - and I love it when i get to look at the beautiful sunset sky, stand by a body of water and drink in LIFE and enjoy new friends!

Last night i spend the evening with some new friends! My friend has two sweet precious little girls - who are full of life! Being that i don't have children of my own, i love it when kids smile and laugh and allow me to be a kid with them. In fact, the smallest of the two made me laugh as we played last night. We had meandered to a park by the St. John's river, it had a magnificent tree that just begged to be climbed! I scampered up the tree and the little one said, "Isn't if fun to be a kid!" (or something very close to that!) Yes, it IS FUN to be a kid...even when you are in your mid-30's! We enjoyed the fresh evening racing, and playing and picking up trash - as it was EARTH DAY, and we were doing our part in ke…

My Brothers

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Here I sit, tears streaming down my face - it is not often that a teacher will sit in her classroom, so touched by the content of her subject that the heart is touched, triggering a memory. It is one of the richest moments to experience.

I teach history, American history to be precise. Today we finished watching a video about WWI and the devastation the world experienced through that travesty. As I have walked with my students through this time period, my memory has been stirred. A memory floats up from a book in the "Anne of Green Gables" series - of which i was a huge fan. My favorite in the series was the final book, "Rilla of Ingleside." For those who are familiar with Anne, Rilla was Anne's youngest daughter. This story took place during the early 1900's and WWI weaves into the story in a fantastic way. (you must read it!)

Anyhow, I identified with Rilla in a special way. She had a very special relationship with her brother - very much like …

Golden List

About a year ago i read the book called "The Ultimate Gift." They made a movie out from it, but as usual, the movied doesn't even come close to the book. From that book my roommate and i decided to adopt something in the book that inspired both of us: The habit of being Thankful! It illustrates the power of being thankful - God's Word tells us many times to BE THANKFUL: a golden list - as the book expressed it - is naming ten things you are thankful for as soon as you wake up! My roommate pulled out an old white board and posted it on the refrigerator and wrote on the top: The Golden List. For weeks we were pretty consistant on writing out ten things we were thankful for....sometimes we would miss a day just because we were so busy but we still tried to stop and list ten things....whatever came to mind worked! So...today i am going to list thirteen things ( my sis-in-love does the Thursday Thirteen so lets make it 13 today!).

1. Beautiful blue skies!
2. A goo…

I love my Mom

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I love my mom. I really do have a wonderful mom. I am so thankful for a mom who i can call one of my best friends. She is a good listener. I have always thought my mom had a special ability to really say the RIGHT thing. She has always shown me how to think of others more than myself. And, she always looks at herself when offended or hurt and tries to see what needs to adjust in her before pointing an accusing finger. I love that. She is the picture of "I can't change them so what does God want me to change in myself." She is the worlds most gracious and loving servant....she finds JOY in serving. Seriously! She would rather be the one on her feet, doing for others than to sit down and be served. I have always loved her sence of humor. She can laugh at herself when she is clumsy, she has never been a self conscious person - always able to find humor in something or herself. I wish i could be more like that as i am too concerned about what others think! Many…