Tuesday, December 20, 2016

It was 2 weeks before Christmas....

Full hands, full heart. Here is a photo dump of how we have been spending our hours these weeks leading up to Christmas!!

    I had the privilege of sharing my God story at our former church, at the ladies Christmas Dinner.
    Also got to hang out with my mother-in-law and sis-in-laws with no kids in tow (girl time!)

    Kids had their Christmas performances (didn't get a picture of the big brother 😐)

    My baby brother's baby turned 1🍰!

    Meran and I cut lots of inches off our hair...ready for the new year 😉

    We attended the For King & Country/Lauren Daigle Christmas Concert.

    Lauren D's music has meant a lot to me these past 2 years, often her lyrics say to God what I can't formulate on my own. So, when we left the concert a bit early and ran into her in the back parking lot you can imagine our delight!! The bummer was that Meran & Alexa stayed til the end, so they missed out on this photo opp/meet and greet. But, I was able to tell her how her music blesses me. What a cool thing the Lord did for us❤️

    Then there is this girl....fashionista in the making!

Merry Christmas! Jesus is so good. May His unending love fall afresh on your Christmas season.

"Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel," which is translated, "God with us". Matthew 1:23

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Anti-ugly goal

With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God. Out of the same mouth comes both blessing and cursing. These things, my brothers, should not be this way (for we have a moral obligation to speak in a manner that reflects our fear of God and profound respect for His precepts.)
James 3:9-10

Ouch. This verse of the day slapped me in the face this morning as I ritually pulled up the bible app to read just a drop of God's word before my feet hit the ground running. Have you ever come out of a surprisingly painful time and want to hurl back the same ugliness?
Yuck, I can't stand my flesh response. James 3:9-10 is the best reminder to control our tongue.
You know that saying, "sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me...."
Completely false.
We doubly know this with all the bully-ing that occurs in our schools. We told ourselves this rhyme and I guess we believed ourselves, because now we have to have campaigns agains bullying, it's gotten so bad.
And while we don't look at it the same or use campaigns to fight it, it happens in the adult world too. Just another reminder that we live in a fallen world and satan is still sneaking around, trying to trip us up.

But then GOD! Always there to remind us and give us tools to not fall into our flesh. Not on our own strength but God's. There to keep our hearts soft, to hold our tongue, to soothe the wounds and remind us that He gives us hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). 

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves...
Romans 12:17-19

Ohhh this is so easy to say and so hard to do! Only by the power of the Holy Spirit. 
So today I am reminded, which came in God's perfect timing, to push away my "flesh" response of wanting to repay evil for evil, and keep seeking Jesus, to keep my heart soft so that I may be a useable vessel. Because an ugly heart makes for a cracked and broken vessel, which can only be used if it's melted down and reshaped. He can do that. So thankful for God's grace. I need it so. Always available, never running dry, God's grace. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Healthy Soul

"Hurt people hurt people" that's what the pastor said,  still ringing in my ears from over a week ago. It not a new thought, but I'm seeing it in a different light now. We are all hurt people because we are human, sinners, and flawed. This happened back in the Garden and my kids like to say they'd do it different if it were them in that garden. But let's be real, we would have done the same....because otherwise there would not be a need for the cross...and we know THAT could never be. But, I'm basically the furthest thing from a theologian, so let's move on;).

Hurt people....that's us. It's me, it's you. From the past, in the current situation, probably in the future. We all make mistakes, we all fall into momentary flesh moments, saying the wrong thing, choosing the wrong words or actions. This could be really depressing if we were left to ourselves.

But PRAISE be to GOD we aren't left.

We are claimed and paid for. At top dollar, not even at discount. How's that for valuable! Jesus gave over to God's Will on the cross (John 19:30) ...


So don't go back. Don't regress. Keep moving forward and cling onto the hope you are given. Keep hold of the promise that you are a new creation in Christ (2 Cor 5:17) and His promises are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). If you stay healthy you won't hurt. (Duh, Britton)

If you keep your heart filled with Jesus and just Jesus (not man, organization, theme, title, or goal) you won't hurt...and then you won't hurt. 

Healthy people help people. 

Ephesians 3:16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being.

Practice spiritual health. Be a vitamin for a soul. 

Jesus...just Jesus. 

No Supplements needed.

Thursday, December 1, 2016


On our son Sutton's 2nd birthday he touched a hot exhaust pipe and received a third degree burn on his sweet baby hand. We immersed his hand in a cup of ice water in attempts to soothe the horrible burning sensation, then sped off to the hospital. If he took his hand out, or when the water no longer was cold, the burning sensation would intensify. It.was.horrible! As a mother I wanted to take away the pain. But we relied on the dr and nurses to tell us how to treat it and care for his precious baby hand, so that it would heal correctly, with minimal damage. They gave us special cream that soothed the skin and told us to keep it wrapped. But, he was required to move his hand a few times a day so that the skin did not heal wrong and restrict his hand movement. 
Though we cannot always see it, such it is with us when we are burned by others, or we do the burning.
We are a world of hurting and broken people. And while we try our best to do God's work, and abide in His will, we so often fall short, accidentally injuring those around us. 
Sometimes this is purposeful and sometimes it is accidental because, we are, after all, all sinners who fall short of the glory of God. (Romans 3:23)
Instead of having "hurt feelings" and curling up in a ball, we can instead, have an eternal perspective on this and ask, "God, how are you using this to refine me?". (Cue ice water)
In Daniel 3 King Nebuchadnezzar furiously throws Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego into the blazing furnace...cranked up so hot, it killed the men carrying these 3 up to the furnace. But, the 3 were not only safe from the crazy hot flames, the Lord was with among them.(Daniel 3:25)
So it is when we go through a trial, fiery and painful....we can be 100% certain that God is with us and has a plan. (Jeremiah 29:11-13) We can call out to Him and He will listen. 
Everything is God's, including our lives. So will He not even use your painful circumstances to His glory?
I love the reminder in Isaiah 54:17 
"No weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that accuses you in judgement You will condemn. This is our heritage of the servants of the Lord and their vindication is from Me, declares the Lord.

May God's word be ointment to your burn.
Soothing your soul and healing it in a way that does not leave permanent damaged.

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