Saturday, March 28, 2009

w i s d o m

"My son, if you accept my words
and store up my commands within you,

turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding,

and if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding,

and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,

then you will understand the fear of the LORD
and find the knowledge of God."

Proverbs 2:1-5
.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

t r u s t

I’ve been struggling with trusting the Lord lately.

Not so much in the BIG stuff. The stuff that’s “bigger than me”. The stuff that I have no choice but to trust Him on.

I don’t seem to struggle with trusting and believing that the Lord has my best in mind (even when it doesn’t feel like it) when it comes to the big stuff in my life.
I completely trust in His Sovereignty and I know that He will definitely make my path straight if I just trust in Him and give control completely over to Him.

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


No problem, I totally get it.

I’m guess I’m struggling with trusting Him with the little stuff. The stuff I would rather just handle myself…rather than giving the situation to Him.

It’s so tempting to believe that He only cares about the big stuff…but the little stuff is up to me.

If I’m not careful, my thoughts go here… “I know God has my ultimate good in mind, BUT does He know what I really like? I mean, if I leave it up to Him, He may not take care of the details that *I* am concerned about. Maybe I just need to help Him out a little. After all, I can’t really expect Him to take care of all the details, can I?”

We are planning on getting a new puppy in the next couple months.
We are so excited!
We know exactly what we want – a light-yellow…boxy-headed (but not too boxy)…big (but not long & lanky)…sweet-tempered…cuddly…Labrador Retriever…that likes pheasants…must like pheasants!
Not too picky, right? ;)

I’ve been struggling with the desire to control every aspect of the search.
To talk to breeder after breeder, nailing down the perfect combination of male & female to give us the best chances of ending up with the our perfect puppy.
And believe me, the breeders are more than willing to “go there” with me…
they get it! ;)

There have been so many mornings that instead of spending my quiet-time with the Lord, I am tempted to get online and research, contact breeders, make sure we are on the right waiting-lists, etc. (I’m not gonna lie…I have succumbed to the temptation more than once!).

But almost every time, I hear a still, small voice whispering to me, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added unto you…”.

Sometimes it feels like I need to physically pry my fingers off the keyboard cause I’m making progress… “Come on God, I’m making good progress, are You seriously gonna make me stop?!?”
Anyway, it’s such a struggle for me. But I know that the Lord is trying to grow me in this area.

I need to trust Him with the little things, as much as I do with the big things.

Cause I’m pretty sure, “all these things” includes cute little puppies!! :)

Matthew 6:33
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”


*********************************************************************************

{ I feel like I should add, my struggle with trusting the Lord with “the little things” is so unfounded…it is ridiculous!
All I have to do is look around me, at all the ways He has blessed me in big AND little ways, and I am SO convicted!
He truly does care about the little things, and He DELIGHTS in blessing me in the details.
He does know what I like…and He does know the desires of my heart…after all, He put them there!!
I am so thankful that He loves me where I’m at…and that He forgives me for being a brat when I tell Him I’m sorry.
He is so good!
}

Friday, March 20, 2009

r u l e s


I was just going through the hundreds (yes…hundreds!!) of pictures from Isabelle’s slumber party.

I love the poster she made for her door with the “rules”.

(Nothing like takin’ the bull by the horns right away…not sure where she gets that?!?)


In case you can’t read them, here they are:

1. Get comfortable
2. Have Fun
3. Be Your self
4. NO Gossip!
5. Make sure your American Girl dolls are comfortable

(I love #4…we’ve been talking a LOT about gossip lately! ;)

And here she is lovin’ on her new doll. So cute!


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

p r a y


In the past few weeks, I have had several people mention to me how they have a hard time praying.

Knowing what to say, and how to say it.

Especially when praying with other people. It can feel so awkward and we can feel like it’s just so messy…especially if we compare our prayers to the prayers of people that we feel are so much "more eloquent" than us.

The other day, I felt like the Lord gave me a picture in my mind of how He wants us to pray.

SIMPLY.

Like we’re talking to a friend, right on the other side of the table.

It doesn’t need to be fancy. We don’t need to impress God…He knows our hearts.

He just wants us to talk to Him.
To tell Him what we need.
To cry out to Him when we’re hurting.
To laugh and rejoice with Him when we’re happy.
To pray for our friends when they are just too weary to pray for themselves.
To have a relationship with Him.

We make it so complicated, don’t we?

Next time you’re praying, try to picture in your mind’s eye Jesus sitting in the chair right next to you. He is. And it’s really not that hard to talk to Him.

James 5:16
"…The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective"



Here is a beautiful song by Casting Crowns called “Prayer For A Friend”.



I pray that not only will I pray like this for my friends, but that when I need prayer, God will raise up people to pray like this for me.

Monday, March 16, 2009

mighty to save



Another a great verse to memorize!

And I love this song that talks about our God being "mighty to save" (this version is sung by Hillsong).


"Everyone needs compassion
A love that's never failing
Let mercy fall on me
Everyone needs forgiveness
The kindness of a Savior
The hope of nations
"

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

c r e a t e


My sweet Isabelle is having a slumber party this weekend with five of her girlfriends from school.

She is celebrating her 9th birthday.

All the girls are bringing their American Girl dolls and camping out (in a tent, of course) in the house.

I LOVE throwing parties! And I LOVE any excuse to make fun things with beautiful fabric. I wasn’t going to let this opportunity pass me by!

I decided that each little girl must have a sleeping bag for her doll!
So, off to the fabric store I went...

Here are my materials, before. I just love the colors...eye candy for sure!




And here is the finished product...







Such a fun (and time-consuming!) project.

Hopefully the girls will like the sleeping bags as much as I do!!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

u n s e e n


“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for
and certain of what we do not see.”

Hebrews 11:1

THE WIND.

We cannot see it, but we know it’s there.

We know it’s there…because we can see the effects of the wind.

We can see leaves blow in the wind.
We can see our curtains flow as a gentle breeze comes in through our window.
We can see an umbrella turn inside-out when the wind blows really hard.

Not for a second do we question if the wind exists.

We know it does…because we can see the effects of it.


I guess it’s kind of the same thing with God.

We cannot see him, but we know He’s there.

We know He’s there…because we can see the effects of Him.

Sometimes it’s in the little things . . .

Like just the right song coming on the radio at just the right time…and the words are exactly what we needed to hear.
Like a friend calling with a word of encouragement at the VERY second we needed it.
Like when we just flip open our Bible, desperate for a word from the Lord, and He delivers just the right verse.
No coincidences.
That is God.

Sometimes it’s in the big things . . .

Like a miraculous healing.
Like sudden financial provision when there seemed to be no way.
Like the mending of a broken relationship that seemed beyond repair.
Like lives transformed before our eyes.
No coincidences.

That is God.

must read


Virtue Alert is a must read blog for moms of teens, if you ask me.



Vicki Courtney is a Christian author and speaker with three teenagers of her own...up to her eyeballs in "teen-culture". She is a wise woman with a very Godly perspective on what's going on in the world of our teens.

And for you teenage girls (I know I have at least one teenage reader...hi Brittney! :), she has a blog called Virtuous Reality.

Check them out when you have a chance...good stuff!!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

s t r e n g t h


This another great verse to memorize, or just claim in prayer . . .



Tuesday, March 3, 2009

d a n c e



If you followed my photography career, you will recognize this picture.

It kind of took on a life of it’s own in the “photography world”.

Sure, partly because it’s artistic & pretty. But I think what really got to people about this image is what it speaks to all of us about “choosing to dance”…in the face of adversity.

I met 3-year old little Ali for the first time on a dreary, January day, three years ago.
She had recently been diagnosed with a very severe form of childhood cancer…with a VERY scary prognosis.
Her parents had asked me to come up to the Ronald McDonald house in Seattle to photograph her before she went back in for her next round of chemo.
When I got there, she was sick…so, so sick!
All she could do was sit on her bed and cuddle her stuffed animals.
I photographed her a little bit, but it just didn’t seem to be a good day for pictures.
We didn’t want to push it…I could always come back when she was feeling better.
As I was preparing to leave, she looked across the room and spotted her tutu hanging in the closet. She pointed to it and asked her mommy if she could put it on. Of course, her sweet mommy got the tutu down and helped Ali get it on.

I’ll never forget what happened next…

When she put that tutu on, it was like she was a different little girl.
Suddenly, she forgot how sick she felt…she just wanted to dance.
We went down the hall where she would have more room, and she began to dance.
It was as if, in that moment, nobody else in the room existed.
She seemed to forget her pain…she spun around like the most beautiful ballerina I had EVER seen.
It took my breath away!

I think we could all learn a valuable lesson from this little girl.

DANCE…no matter what you’re facing!

It might be hard, but don’t wait to start living until all your problems are gone…it’s probably not gonna happen this side of heaven.

So get up.

Put on that tutu.

And DANCE.

I’ll join you!!

Psalm 30:11
“You turned my wailing into dancing;
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy”