Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Happy Blogiversary to Aim Claim!

Today is my first Blogiversary! For those of you who aren't really in touch with Blogger world and haven't heard that term before, it means that I have been blogging for a year now. Yup, that is right, I wrote my first blog entry on Nov 21, 2005. I can't believe it! It seems like just yesterday that Kpinion's amazing writing influenced me in such a way that I felt moved to start a blog. I needed an outlet. I needed a way to express the amazing things that God was doing in my heart and in my life.

As I write today, I realize how distant I have been lately... and I am sorry for that my friends. I really miss writing... both for me AND for those who enjoy reading what I write. I started a new job this past summer and ever since then, I just haven't really had the extra time during the day that I used to at my old job to put toward being introspective like I once did. I know that really isn't an excuse, because I still have a computer at home that I could use to post. I will try harder. I miss you AimClaim.

Anyway, I just wanted to post today to say thank you. Thank you to those of you who love and support me each and every day, to those who encourage me to use my God given talents to share and grow, and to my loving Father who lets me crawl up into His lap to reflect, love, and learn!

So... Happy Blogiversary Aim Claim!

Monday, October 16, 2006


The heavy clouds that hang on me,
They weigh my shoulders down,
The highest highs, the lowest lows,
Please bring me back around.

The rain, it falls, to drench the soul,
The dry earth turns to mud,
I want to fix all that is wrong,
For all of those I love.

My cup flows over, blessings full,
It pours down to the ground,
Why can't I trade my cup for theirs,
The graciousness I've found.

Those who love me, give too much,
I don't give back enough,
To understand that nothing's free,
That life is always tough.

I pray for peace inside my soul,
I thank God for what's mine,
The reason for my blessed life,
My joy in Him I find.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

A Father's Wrath

She cowered in fear under the stairs as she heard her father's large feet carry him up and downstairs looking for her. He was angry. REALLY ANGRY... and she knew that it was directed at her. He knew exactly where she was hiding, but instead of revealing her, he merely made his wrath known as she remained curled in a ball under the stairs thinking about her actions. A tear rolled down her face and onto the floor... she had let him down... she had broken his rules... she had broken his trust. She had known wrong from right and she knowingly chose the wrong. Walking in disobedience was dark, lonely, and most of all unsafe. She wished now that she had thought about the consequences of her actions, and about the pain that she would cause herself and others. The darkness consumed her as she sat alone on the cold concrete floor. "I'm sorry Dad" she whispered, and then she lowered her head into her lap and began to cry.

Just then, the small door opened and light poured into the small closet type room. Blinded by the light, all she could see were the arms of her father... reaching out to hold her... to love her... to protect her.

The same passion that left her father angry, was the intense love and compassion that he had for his precious child. She was lifted up and out of the darkness and into his lap. As the two sat, she nuzzled her head into his strong shoulder. He wrapped his arms around her, rocking her peacefully. "You are forgiven, child" he whispered back... "Love forgives."

Romans 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God's wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The perfect gift.

It was the most beautiful package she had ever seen. The box was gold in color, with a shimmer that made you want to touch it. The ribbon, tied with such delicacy, seemed to float as it wrapped from the bottom of the box, up the sides and into the most perfect bow that sat on the very center of the top of the box. The bow was the deepest of red in color as it swooped along the box. As she neared the box, admiring its beauty, she realized that attached to the bow was a gold card. Her curiosity drew her in as she reached her hand out and opened the card to see who this lovely gift was for. Inside the card read...

My precious child I give you,
a gift you'll never see,
don't leave the ribbon tied,
it's the blood that's shed of me.

The box I give you holds,
A gift from me alone,
So open up the pretty box,
Your sins it will atone.

This gift, it is forever,
So don't forget its there,
Keep some of it for you,
The rest of it you share.

She smiled as she picked up the beautiful box, for she had realized that this most perfect gift was for her.... for her to open, for her to keep, for her to share, and for her to LOVE. God's most perfect gift was for HER.

Monday, September 11, 2006


Bravery is fighting for something you believe in.
Bravery is serving your brother.
Bravery is loving even when you don't want to.
Bravery is putting others before yourself.
Bravery is continuing to pray for a hurting nation.
Bravery is standing for freedom.
Bravery is forgiving those who have done wrong.
Bravery is looking past fear and into the eyes of HOPE.

I am proud to be from a country that continues to stand strong and brave through the trials of tragedy and war.
To those who have lost, those who fight, and those who lead...
We remember September 11, 2001.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

He waits.

He waited. Patiently. Quietly. Hoping that this time she would show up. They used to meet here every day, and for some reason she had just stopped coming lately. He wondered what kept her from coming. Was she too busy? Had she found somewhere else to go? Had she overslept? Did she just not want to spend time with him anymore? Needless to say, he was hurt, really hurt. He realized that he had been stood up. He had been stood up, and she wasn't coming today, or tomorrow, but he waited with the hope that she would come soon. He didn't leave. He waited...and waited...and waited.

She was busy. But not busy in the way that most people refer to busy, running around getting things done. No. She was busy in the "I'm not doing nothing, I'm just not doing something" kind of way...distant, occupied, and consumed with things that left her feeling empty. She didn't meet him today, she was busy.

He waits. Patiently. Quietly. Disappointed. Hoping that this time she will show up... Hoping that this time she will make time. Hoping that she will realize that he isn't going to meet her when she wants to show up, he is going to wait on her till she does. Patiently...quietly...lovingly...Fatherly...He waits with the unconditional love that only our Heavenly Father can give.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Strongest Dad in the World

[From Sports Illustrated, By Rick Reilly]
I try to be a good father. Give my kids mulligans.Work nights to pay for their text messaging.
But compared with Dick Hoyt, I stink.
Eighty-five times he's pushed his disabled son, Rick, 26.2 miles in marathons. Eight times he's not only pushed him 26.2 miles in a wheelchair but also towed him 2.4 miles in a dinghy while swimming and pedaled him 112 miles in a seat on the handlebars--all in the same day.
Dick's also pulled him cross-country skiing, taken him on his back Mountain climbing and once hauled him across the U.S. on a bike. Makes taking your son bowling look a little lame, right?
And what has Rick done for his father? Not much--except save his life.
This love story began in Winchester , Mass. , 43 years ago, when Rick was strangled by the umbilical cord during birth, leaving him brain-damaged and unable to control his limbs.
"He'll be a vegetable the rest of his life;'' Dick says doctors told him and his wife, Judy, when Rick was nine months old. "Put him in an institution.''
But the Hoyts weren't buying it. They noticed the way Rick's eyes followed them around the room. When Rick was 11 they took him to the engineering department at Tufts University and asked if there was anything to help the boy communicate. "No way,'' Dick says he was told. "There's nothing going on in his brain.''
"Tell him a joke,'' Dick countered. They did. Rick laughed. Turns out a lot was going on in his brain.
Rigged up with a computer that allowed him to control the cursor by touching a switch with the side of his head, Rick was finally able to communicate.
First words? "Go Bruins!'' And after a high school classmate was paralyzed in an accident and the school organized a charity run for him, Rick pecked out, "Dad, I want to do that.''Yeah, right. How was Dick, a self-described "porker'' who never ran more than a mile at a time, going to push his son five miles? Still, he tried.
"Then it was me who was handicapped,'' Dick says. "I was sore for two weeks.''
That day changed Rick's life. "Dad,'' he typed, "when we were running, it felt like I wasn't disabled anymore!''
And that sentence changed Dick's life. He became obsessed with giving Rick that feeling as often as he could. He got into such hard-belly shape that he and Rick were ready to try the 1979 Boston Marathon.
"No way,'' Dick was told by a race official. The Hoyts weren't quite a single runner, and they weren't quite a wheelchair competitor. For a few years Dick and Rick just joined the massive field and ran anyway, then they found a way to get into the race officially: In 1983 they ran another marathon so fast they made the qualifying time for Boston the following year.
Then somebody said, "Hey, Dick, why not a triathlon?''
How's a guy who never learned to swim and hadn't ridden a bike since he was six going to haul his 110-pound kid through a triathlon? Still, Dick tried.
Now they've done 212 triathlons, including four grueling 15-hour Ironmans in Hawaii . It must be a buzzkill to be a 25-year-old stud getting passed by an old guy towing a grown man in a dinghy, don't you think?
Hey, Dick, why not see how you'd do on your own? "No way,'' he says. Dick does it purely for "the awesome feeling'' he gets seeing Rick with a cantaloupe smile as they run, swim and ride together.
This year, at ages 65 and 43, Dick and Rick finished their 24th Boston Marathon , in 5,083rd place out of more than 20,000 starters. Their best time'? Two hours, 40 minutes in 1992--only 35 minutes off the world record, which, in case you don't keep track of these things, happens to be held by a guy who was not pushing another man in a wheelchair at the time."No question about it,'' Rick types. "My dad is the Father of the Century.''
And Dick got something else out of all this too. Two years ago he had a mild heart attack during a race. Doctors found that one of his arteries was 95% clogged. "If you hadn't been in such great shape,'' one doctor told him, "you probably would've died 15 years ago.''
So, in a way, Dick and Rick saved each other's life.
Rick, who has his own apartment (he gets home care) and works in Boston, and Dick, retired from the military and living in Holland , Mass., always find ways to be together. They give speeches around the country and compete in some backbreaking race every weekend, including this Father's Day.
That night, Rick will buy his dad dinner, but the thing he really wants to give him is a gift he can never buy.The thing I'd most like,'' Rick types, "is that my dad sit in the chair and I push him once."

Here's the video, get your tissues ready... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjPrL3n63yg

Monday, August 21, 2006


"Hello....Hello... Hello...Hello..." with each hello getting quieter she heard her voice resonate down into the blackness. "Can anyone hear me... hear me... hear me... hear me..." she yelled again hoping that this time she might get a response. Frustrated, she grabbed a pebble from the gravel path near by and she held it over the large hole. Slowly she released her fingers from around the rock and it fell... down, down, down... she could hear it running along the sides of the wall as if the opening was getting smaller and smaller. She waited to hear a thud, or a splash as the rock hit whatever it was that was at the bottom of this... but she never heard anything... only silence. She wanted to know what this hole was for, and why it was right here for her to pass by. She wanted to know what was at the bottom and she wanted to hear the voice that should be answering her call. When she yelled into the darkness, she didn't get an answer, all she heard was herself... her own voice? Maybe this was what God needed her to hear instead of hearing His voice... maybe the silence had a purpose, or maybe it wasn't really silence at all. It was then that she realized that it is through these dark, silent unknowns in life that God can show us so much wisdom in the comfort of our own voice and heart... for He resides not in a noise or sound, but in our heart.


Sorry I have been so MIA lately... I was busy working on a special project all last week *wink*

Monday, August 07, 2006


Sitting in the middle of the concrete slab of a large playground, she pulled a bag from her pocket. With legs crossed Indian style she held the small blue bag in her lap. She grabbed the bag with both hands and began to untie the rope that held it closed. Once untied, she used her fingers to peak inside. With the bag in the palm of one hand, she reached into it with the other hand and pulled a small red bouncy ball from inside. She smirked as she then flipped her wrist down to allow for the contents of the bag to pour out. Tiny silver jacks flooded out from the bag’s opening and onto the flat ground, as if stars falling from the heavens. The metal pieces had six points to it, four that had round tips and two that were pointed. Some of the jacks seemed as if to point their sharp fingers at her, while others were softer and round. As they settled in their places the metal pieces seemed to lean on their sides against the concrete. Some of the jacks were close to her and there were others that were so far away that they almost seemed set apart, unreachable, unattainable. She took the red bouncy ball in her right hand and dropped it. The ball hit the ground and then shot back up into the air. As the ball flew, she reached down to the ground and picked up one of the silver jacks and then caught the red ball with the same hand as it came back down. "Onesies" she said to herself. She threw the ball up in the air again and before it hit the ground the second time, she had picked up two small silver jacks. “Twosies,” she said. Then, “Threesies”. She kept going and kept going, but her hand wasn’t big enough… she couldn’t get them all. She tried and tried, over and over again, never to give up. She wanted it all… but she couldn’t have it.

Then He sat down. She didn’t have to play alone any longer. She handed Him the ball and swiftly in one toss He threw the small red ball up and picked up all of the tiny jacks, all at once. He caught the ball, looked down at His hand, and then extended His arm out with open palm to her. She couldn’t help but smile as she accepted the gift… “Thank you Jesus” she said.

It was only with Him that she could have it all… that she could get it all… that she could win it all.

Friday, August 04, 2006

What Is This Pain?

What is this pain, my precious Dad,
That twists deep down inside,
The hurt that causes me to weep,
In you I will confide.

What is this pain, Father of mine,
That won't let go of me,
The one that takes my every thought,
Why won't it let me be.

What is this pain, my one Savior,
I want to be so strong,
A smiling face, it's not for real,
I fill up with all that's wrong.

What is this pain, King of kings,
That dulls when I'm with you,
I refuge in your shelter, Lord,
I kneel down at your pew.

What is this pain, Lord of my life,
Please take it all away,
And leave me with your perfect peace,
Real joy inside to stay.

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16:11

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

In Bulk

I don't know about you, but every time I go to Sam's or Costco, I am overwhelmed the minute I step in the door by the massive bulk amts of stuff. I pay the yearly fee to have a "membership" to such a place and then I merely walk around, never purchasing anything. Why not? you wonder. Well, I guess I just don't have room. I especially get excited when visiting the frozen foods isle or the gum isle, but then I am quickly shot back into reality, realizing that 24 cordon blues would be enough for me to eat cordon blue for almost an entire month straight. Case and point... I hate buying in bulk! I don't have room to keep the stuff around, and I sure don't use it fast enough to justify buying so much. As a result, I have a membership to Sam's that is pretty much worthless, and I make a trip to the grocery store about every other week, just to pick up the necessities.

I find that sometimes I don't want God in bulk either. I will stroll around, looking at what I should take home, and then I walk out so as to not be overwhelmed. Instead I take small pieces of Him, only enough to stay satisfied... never really filling myself up. Its like I know that I can always get God, so I fill my life up with other things instead of filling up the excess room that I have with Him. I am sick of taking advantage of the fact that God is accessible... I want God in bulk...I want to fill up...I want leave no space for things of this world... for with His eternal love I will never need more.

Friday, July 28, 2006

My Apartment

I always wanted a little apartment in the city. Well, I got it.. and it wasn't just little, it was tiny. With just a few paychecks under my belt, I moved to the city to inhabit a one room apt (what they call an efficiency) that measured to 485 square feet. Having never lived alone, I didn't really know what to expect, but it didn't take long for me to appreciate the space (no matter how small) that I could now call mine.

Three years later, I lay in bed in my tiny city dwelling, for the last night before moving. I listened to the swishing sound from outside my window as the cars drove by. With each car's passing the headlights produced a striped light from my blinds that quickly moved all across my ceiling. I hear people cheering over a game at the sports bar downstairs. Every fifteen minutes, like clockwork, the rattle of the Uptown Trolley begins... rumbling quietly first... then louder...and louder... then less... and less... until the trolley has passed completely. I smile as I remember how much this noise had bothered me when I had first moved in... I hardly notice it now as it rocks me to sleep.

I'm gonna miss this place. I am gonna miss the bruises on my shins from running into my cramped furniture. I am gonna miss the bag of shoes in my living room that I have to use because my closet won't hold them all. I am gonna miss having to travel down the hall to do my laundry. I am gonna miss waiting for 5-10 minutes on the elevator. I am gonna miss being able to see my fridge from my bed. I am gonna miss being able to walk to many fabulous restaurants and bars. I am gonna miss the skyscrapers watching over me. I am going to miss a convenient store downstairs. I am gonna miss walking and jogging down Katy trail. I am gonna miss my tiny apartment in the city and all that comes with it... this apartment is now a part of me that I will never forget.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Our Test

*Flashback* Jr. High. Test days were not good days. The room was silent other than the faint scraching sound of no. 2 pencils running down the pages to fill in bubble after bubble. There wasn't a set time that the test had to be finished in, it was up to the test taker... some took more time than others. Tests are never fun, but the goal was always the same... to do as well as you can followed with the relief of turning in your work. A finished work.

Our lives are tests. And our lives on Earth are test days. We spend our days scraching out what we hope is our best, trying to answer with the perfection of Christ. Some of us take a full life to finish the test, while others turn the test in early... having completed their work. What a relief it must be to turn in our earthly tests to the master teacher at the gates of heaven. I can only hope that he greets me with arm outstretched to take my test... "Well done, my precious student".

Friday, July 21, 2006

The Path

She walked along the rugged path,
In search of something real,
Never knowing what it was she’d need,
Never knowing what she’d feel.

The path it was a winding one,
With bumps and turns and curves,
She stumbled and she fell sometimes,
Never doubting the God she serves.

Her winding path did merge,
To find the perfect man,
Their match was of God’s timing,
They were obedient to his plan.

Now hand in hand they go,
Along the path of life,
Their dreams had now come true,
He asked her to be his wife.

Their love became complete,
One and one can now be two,
God blessed all they had found,
They’re some of the lucky few.

She used to walk the rugged path,
But now she’s found what’s real,
To never walk alone again,
Their forever love God seals.

*For my dear friends Ryan and Leah who are getting married this weekend. Congrats!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Telephone a Friend

Ring-Ring...Ring-Ring...Ring-Ring... She ignores the call, too busy to even see who it is. Ring-Ring... Ring-Ring... with an annoyed sigh, she walks over to the phone and picks it up.

Hello... Oh, Hi! I haven't talked to you in forever... Well, I'm doing ok, I guess. I been struggling with some stuff lately, but I won't bother you with it....Sure, I would love to hang out sometime, but I don't really think I am going to have time soon. I have been super busy. You know, there just aren't enough hours in the day to get it all done, ha-ha.... What? Well, of course I still want to be your friend, I have known you for such a long time... Don't be silly, We can still be best friends, even if we don't talk or hang out very often... No, I am not trying to REPLACE you with new friends. I know I haven't really treated you like my best friend lately, but I promise you still are...Why are you being like this, I don't have to hang out with you all the time. I didn't want to hurt your feelings, but to be totally honest, my new friends just don't like you that much. They say you hold me back, that I am more fun when you are not around. I mean, I'm the life of the party!... I don't care what you think.... I know you love me. What do you mean, how's my heart?... Stop being so overprotective, you're acting like my mom...Whatever, leave me alone!


For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. Exodus 20:5-6

Monday, July 17, 2006


BOOM... BOOM... BOOM... I could feel my head pound louder with each heartbeat. I couldn't take it any longer... longing for relief of any sort, I reached into my medicine drawer and scrounged around for a bottle. Box after box, bottle after bottle, I searched through each specific drug trying to find which one would cure my aliment. For sinus and congestion, for backaches and muscle aches, for indigestion, I read through the labels... for headaches... yes! there it was! I popped two pills and waited, bottle in hand. MY HEAD STILL HURTS! With still pounding head, I went back to my desk to continue the day, hoping that the medicine would slowly kick in and lessen the intensity behind my forehead. Um, excuse me genie in a bottle, I took medicine, it's your turn to snap your fingers, or bob your head, or wiggle your nose....I don't care what you do, just do it! What is taking so long? Why haven't you healed me? I want to feel better NOW!

There are so many times in life when I am hurting that I just want to pray and have God heal me immediately. I want Him to hear my cry, and reply with answers. I want Him to soothe my burn with with the touch of His hand. I prayed... why don't I feel better? Is my desire for immediate gratification unrealistic? Well, it's human. I must have faith in God's perfect timing. It takes time, and patience to heal me when I am hurting. And it takes faith to know that my God is sovereign. Just like my medicine, God heals me... He is all the medicine I need.

Monday, July 10, 2006

The Merge

Behind the wheel. Driving. Down the speedway she flew. Where she was headed, she didn't know. With the windows down, she felt the wind blow through her long brown locks. The radio blared loud as she tried to tune out the world... focused on the things that she knew distracted her the most. Confidently cruising with only one hand on the wheel, she saw the sign notifying her of her upcoming exit. While hesitant, she put her blinker on and switched lanes, moving over to the far right. While cruising had been so easy, she found herself feeling a new feeling as she exited the speedway. The ramp carried her up and off the speedway as she barreled toward the service road. As she neared, she noticed a simple triangular sign. The sign was familiar but she realized that she had never really paid attention before. The sign was red and white, shaped like an upside down triangle with the tip pointing directly at the ground. She slowed as she neared, reading the lone word that was written in red lettering on the white and red sign. While she had always known what this word meant, it hadn't registered as to what was about to happen in her life. YIELD it read. With both hands now on the wheel, she put her foot on the brake, looking over her right shoulder she began to merge with a new way... a different way... a better way... it was His way. She was yielding to God's precious love, yielding to God's perfect peace, and yielding to God's endless joy... She had yielded to Him. Her now merged heart put her on a NEW path...a path that leads her on the road to eternal life.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Worry Beads

My parents returned from a trip to Greece on Monday and on their return they brought me a several little gifts. One of these gifts was a small chain, no longer than 6 inches or so, and along the small metal chain were colored beads that moved up and down on the chain. I was quickly informed that these Greek beads were called "worry beads" and that they were something that the Greeks played with in their hands or pockets. The worry beads came in all varieties colors and prices, everything from plastic to ivory. I have been fascinated with my small chain of beads ever since my parents gave it to me, clicking the beads together while watching TV, and spinning the chain around my finger like a tether ball wraping around a pole. I think worry beads were created just so fidgety people, like me, could keep themselves busy. So, if these beads were merely for fidgeting, why were they called worry beads? I wondered.

This morning while reading Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World by Joanna Weaver, I read a chapter on worry and ran across the most appropriate passage. I am sure I would have found it interesting no matter what, but having just been given a string of worry beads, I was especially moved by this writing that seemed to have been written especially for my heart....

"... the use of Komboloi [worry beads] had declined significantly in Greece over the past three or four decades as young Greeks tried to adopt more modern ways. But now, it seems, these ancient stress reducers are making a big comeback. Even in cosmopolitan Athens, they're everywhere. You can pick up plastic worry beads cheaply at newsstands or fork out as much as thousands of dollars at a jewelry store for something more ornate. Executives in Armani suits flick their fingers over ivory beads and smooth black stones. Old men click wooden ones. Hip young Greeks twirl their strings of beads, comparing styles and price tags. It's a tradition that still brings a form of comfort.
I wonder how many of them know where the komboloi originated? I wonder if they would trade in their clicking and clacking for the original purpose these strings represented? Komboloi you see, were first used in other cultures for the sole purpose of counting prayers. Bead by bead, prayer by prayer, the komboloi were an outward expression of a Godward heart."

An "outward expression of a Godward heart", hum? I thought. How cool is that! I want a Godward heart! So, this morning I promptly hung my worry beads on the rearview mirror of my car. On the drive to work, playing with my worry beads not only kept my mind off of the morning's rush hour traffic, I am excited by this new reminder for prayer each morning. I am dedicating myself to 6 prayers each morning... one for each bead on my chain.

Why worry, when I can pray.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

I live in America.

I live in America... Where brave men fight so that others can have the freedom that many Americans take for granted.

I live in America... Where people can speak their minds without fear and protest without punishment.

I live in America... Where courage means standing up and standing out, not sitting down.

I live in America... Where religion can be a matter of the heart, not the law of the land.

I live in America... Where diversity is promoted and equality is expected.

I live in America... Where the stars and stripes can bond strangers together as one.

I live in America... The land of the free and the home of the brave.

Happy Birthday America!!!

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Two Peas in a Pod

Side by side,
Wrapped up in green,
Most perfect pair you’ve ever seen,
Two peas in a pod.

From His garden,
Grown with love,
Most perfect pair from up above,
Two peas in a pod.

One now two,
Round and sweet,
Most perfect pair that’ll ever meet,
Two peas in a pod.

So similar,
But still unique,
A perfect life together they seek,
Two peas in a pod.

Sunday Scribblings Topic : Two Peas in a Pod

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Happiness is a smile, but JOY is attitude.
Happiness is a friend, but JOY is a friendship.
Happiness is a sunset, but JOY is knowing it will rise again.
Happiness is being unique , but JOY is freedom.
Happiness is a kiss, but JOY is love.
Happiness is a house, but JOY is a home.
Happiness is a diamond ring, but JOY is a marriage.
Happiness is hot coffee, but JOY is a warm heart.
Happiness is a job well done, but JOY is pride.
Happiness is sharing, but JOY is giving it all.
Happiness is trust, but JOY is faith.
Happiness is what I do, but JOY is who I am.
Happiness is having money, but JOY is having an inheritance in Heaven.
Happiness is fleeting, but JOY is in my heart always.
Happiness is my strength, but JOY is my strength in the Lord.

Do not weep, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10

Thursday, June 22, 2006

I Hate You

*SLAM* The bedroom door crashes closed, shaking the wall with its force.

A small voice from behind the door yells out "I HATE YOU!!! You are SOOOOO unfair!"

Mom stood in the hallway, head hung at the painful words that her own child had just screamed at her. She sniffled as a singe tear drop ran down her cheek and off her chin. She closed her eyes and put her hands to her mouth, replaying the scene in her head that had just unfolded....

A 14 year old Jenny comes into the kitchen, dressed in her shortest of mini skirts, ready to head out for the evening. "Mom" she yells before she realizes that her mother is sitting at the kitchen table working on her laptop.

"yes, darling" mom replied as she slowly raised her head to look at her daughter... "what in God's name do you think you are wearing? Do you really think you are going ANYWHERE looking like that?"

"What?" the teenager retorts defensively, "this is what ALL the girls are wearing! I think it is just fine!"

"The only thing that is fine, is if you march back upstairs and put on something else! Your grandfather would roll over in his grave if he saw you looking like that!"


"Too bad!" Mom states firmly, while making a turn around motion with her hand through the air.

Jenny sighs loudly and then stops up the stairs making sure each step could be heard loud and clear from all over the house. Her mother followed her up the stairs and down the hall.


Opening her eyes, she began to think about those three little words again, and again. While she knew that those words were not really what was in her young daughter's heart, it still hurt. How could she be so insensitive to say such horrible words to the one who gave her everything, who picks her up when she falls, who teaches her and guides her, and who loves her with the most precious and unconditional love that only a parent can give.

The more she thought she realized that this must be how God feels when we turn away from Him.... when we hurt Him. He gave us everything. He picks us up when we fall. He teaches us and guides us... and He loves us with the most PERFECT and unconditional love that only our Heavenly Father can give.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


She went to the mailbox, dreading what she might find there.

She opened the mailbox door hoping that just this once it wouldn't be there... but it was. She turned over the envelope and ran her hand along the edge of the envelope carefully tearing it open. Inside she pulled out the statement and unfolded the first page. Page after page, the statement unfolded like an accordian down out of her hands and onto the ground. As the statement fell, so did her mouth... how could she possibly pay off this debt!

She reviewed the detail, line by line, until finally she got to the end. Confused, she read the word that was stamped at the end of all the pages. Instead of a total, the amt owed said "PAID".

She couldn't believe what she was reading. Could this really be taking care of? Was her debt gone or would she receive a statement next month with more charges and a fee for not paying off this one. As she ran her fingers over the words "PAID" again in unbelief, she noticed something written in small print just below it...

Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. Romans 13:8

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Daddy's Little Girl

A baby girl born of two’s love,
A twinkle in Dad’s eye,
A precious gift from up above,
Daddy’s little girl.

His little girl with ringlet head,
A performer, bold and loud,
She ran and played till time for bed,
Daddy’s little girl.

A teenager brought pride and stress,
Dad loved her as she grew,
Her parent’s patience she did test,
Daddy’s little girl.

Off to college that girl did go,
Independent and alone,
Years of hard work, it sure did show,
Daddy’s little girl.

Graduate, paycheck in hand,
A new side of Dad she learned,
Proud of him, now biggest fan,
Daddy’s little girl.

All grown up, inside you see,
A heart that still is young,
No matter what she’ll always be,
Daddy’s little girl.

Happy Father's Day Dad!

Saturday, June 17, 2006


Buzz… Buzz… Buzz… Buzz… Smack! Silence.

Flat on my back. With eyes cracked, I stare at the bumpy texture that covers the ceiling. The ceiling fan creeks as it spins quickly… round and round… round and round…round and round. It is quiet. Chilly, but not cold. Peaceful, but not still. I am alone. The white sheets surround me, hugging me, comforting me and my fluffy down comforter tops my pallet of bliss like a dollop of cool whip on the most wonderful piece of pumpkin pie.

“I think I shall stay here forever!” I declare to myself. I began to think of logistically how I would be able to get food and water to sustain. How I could have the newspaper delivered to my bedside so that I could keep up on the world. How I would get to watch Regis and Kelly EVERY DAY! How I could just use up my savings while I didn’t go to work. Hum? I might be onto something brilliant!

Buzz… Buzz…Buzz… Buzz… SMACK! Dang it! Up we go.

If only I could spend my snooze time like a normal person!

Sunday Scribblings Topic: Bed

Monday, June 12, 2006


She sat on a simple bench staring into the darkness of night. With eyes closed, she felt the warm summer breeze blowing across her face and through her long hair. She didn’t move, she didn’t talk… she just felt. Every tiny eyelash, every inch of skin, and every strand of hair… she felt it all move. With eyes open, she saw nothing. Life had been so busy, so all consuming, that she hadn’t stopped, she hadn’t felt, she hadn’t experienced… she had merely done. The breeze was calming… as if calling her to be still and experience. In the business of life, how had she missed this simple breeze? How could she feel beauty with her eyes closed? Refreshed by this calmness that had moved through her, she stood up, ready to face the day. The past was behind her, the future was ahead of her…she had been moved.

Saturday, June 03, 2006


Like a jigsaw puzzle fresh out of the box, the pieces were strewn all across the room. She couldn’t find the box that it came in, and longed to see the picture that would someday be formed when the pieces came together. Confused as to where she should even begin, she found a corner piece… and another… and another… and another. There were four and on each piece were the faces of her family members, smiling back at her… supporting… loving. She started with the corners and slowly built out from there. With each piece she learned new things about the puzzle, she saw new things, and she understood the big picture better. The puzzle was intricate and difficult to figure out. She felt as if she would never really finish it, as if the puzzle was made to be completed by someone who knew more. Some of the pieces were big with pointed corners that were hard to fit, and other pieces fell into place perfectly, so easy and graceful. She liked it when she found those easy pieces, it was gratifying. Getting through the hard pieces though, making them fit… that felt even better. While frustrating to struggle with them, she always seemed to get through it. After figuring out the hard stuff, she felt as if she was more prepared to face another hard one, as if she was better because of them. Before she even realized it, she had almost completed her puzzle. It had taken a long time, years of hard work… but it was good time. She had worked from the outside in, and finally looked around the floor to find the final piece that would complete it all. There in the corner, she spotted it. As she bent down to pick it up, she was surprised at what she saw. It was a man’s face and the minute she saw him, she knew exactly who He was. She was frustrated as she realized that THIS piece was what made her puzzle complete… it was THIS man who had all the answers to the past that she had been trying to put together. From the first corner pieces of her earliest memories to the difficult pieces that take years to figure out, it was THIS piece that completed it all. He was the one who could bring it all back… who could remind her of all the pieces of her memory and show her what the big picture was. As she stood back at the end of her life, she now understood it all… she remembered it all. Every memory, every experience, every piece… they all made up the picture that was her life… and she smiled as she saw Jesus at the center.

Sunday Scribbling theme: Earliest Memory

Friday, June 02, 2006


Adios, Au Revoir, Goodbye,
She turned to leave with a sigh,
Three years of her life at this place,
Many friendly people she'd embraced.

Ciao, Shalom, Farewell,
Thanks for memories she'd yell,
To all those who'd made her job better,
They said they wouldn't forget her.

Arrivederci , Sayonara, So long,
Thanks for making me feel I belong,
The laughter, good times, and great food,
She felt blessed for the old AND the new.

Thanks to all of my Cardinal friends for making my experience a special one!!!
You will be missed- A

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Wise Billy

All the masterpieces of art contain both light and shadow. A happy life is not one filled with only sunshine, but one which uses both light and shadow to produce beauty.
-Billy Graham

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Say Anything!

Ok, so you gentlemen out there may not know what I am taking about, but read along anyway. As teenage girls, we used to read this magazine called YM. Every girl's favorite section was the one called "Say Anything" where girls would write in their most mortifying moments so that other pre-pubescent girls can read and be like "OH MY GAW! Can you believe that! I would have died!" etc... etc.

While there were always about 5 or 6 new stories in each magazine edition, each and every story pretty much had the basic ingredients : a crush, being on your period, falling down, revealed boobs, and the party of the year that your reputation depends on. The result is something like this...

Ok, so it was the day before Matt Stone's 16th Birthday party and I was totally stoked to be the hottest girl there. I headed out with my best friend Misty to find a totally rocking outfit to steal Matt away from his snobby cheerleader girlfriend Jenny. So we stopped by the Limited Too and as I walked in the door I spotted the most BEAUTIFUL! pink mini skirt... I HAD TO HAVE IT! Misty and I went to the tiny dressing rooms in the back to try on what I call my "rock Matt Stone's world" skirt. Just as I was pulling the skirt up around my knees, I stepped on my bonnie bell cotton candy lip gloss, lost my balance and went crashing out the dressing room curtain and onto the floor. As I was lying in the middle of Limited too, I looked up to realize that not only was I on the floor with my "rock Matt Stone's world" mini skirt around my knees, my left boob had fallen out of my bra ! And what was worse...my maxi pad had flown out of my panties and had hit Matt Stone (who was there shopping with that hoe Jenny) in the head, knocking him unconscious! Matt was out cold for quite a while, but once he came to his senses, he said that he loved me and we have been together ever since!

Ha-ha! Please... share with me your greatest made up embarrassing moment!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Vine

With roots firmly in the ground, the vine stretched tall towards the sky. Intertwined along the sides of the vine, the branches wrapped around as if in a continuous group hug. The branches that were not intertwined were weak and could not stand alone, instead they broke, falling to the ground. Supported by the vine, the branches were stronger with every inch of growth. The branches that had reached the top were then branched out and as the tips arched backwards, the ends bore the most most beautiful of fruit. The fruit was big, plump, and refreshing... a joy to all those who pass. We are called to be branches, intertwined with the body of believers and one with the central vine... Christ. Apart from the vine, we can not grow, we can not stand alone, and we definitely can not bear fruit. My Father is the gardener, pruning me to bear more and more fruit and cutting away the branches of me that do not. Held strong by my vine, I will be fruitful... I will be beautiful... and I will nourish all of those who pass by... I will be grown in Him.

Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
John 15:4-5
* picture taken in a vinyard in Tuscany, October 2005

Friday, May 26, 2006

First Love

Foolish is the first love,
Believing it's the last,
The innocence and fun,
And memories of the past.

If I had only known,
How much better it could get,
I would have walked away,
Never fearing I'd forget.

I wouldn't have been ready,
To meet the perfect man,
If my heart had not been broken,
If we had met outside God's plan.

Once two we are now one,
God prepared our hearts to meet,
His timing, it was perfect,
Two people, now complete.

Foolish is the first love,
I've found one that's for real,
My last love is my first love now,
This forever love God seals.

Sunday Scribblings Topic : First Love

Thursday, May 25, 2006


I want a house.... It doesn't have to be big, and it doesn't have to be fancy, but I want it built right. You see, I have always dreamed of owning my own house... coming home from work, walking in the little white picket fence and up the cobblestone path. When greeted by precious dog, I would pet him and then dash up the porch stairs and inside to what I call "home". A house can become part of you, an extension of your family. On the other hand, I feel that a house is made of the people who live there... just like a church is not a building, it is a community of believers. I want to build my house on rock. Not on sand, or gravel... I want something strong, and firm, never to be shaken or blown away. I want it to be a shelter, to protect my family from all that the world will beat down on us. Together, we will make sure that my house won't leak, won't crack, and won't shift. Although my house is only a dream right now, I already have a foundation. It was given to me by my family and I carry it with me no matter where I go. I want to build on that... a foundation... a home built on the rock... a life built on God.

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.
Matthew 7:24-25

Wednesday, May 24, 2006


Voltera, Italy- October 2005

Change is traveling down a new path.
Change is not knowing where I am going.
Change is being excited about what God has in store.
Change is embracing God's plan for my life.
Change is learning what I don't know.
Change is realizing that I am growing up.
Change is starting the new, but never forgetting the old.
Change is seeing the sunshine ahead.
Change is letting go and letting God.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

My cup.

Drip... Drip... Drip... slowly each drop of water dripped down and onto the ground. The earth was so dry that it disappeared the minute it hit the surface. Drip... Drip... Drip... On the ground there was a small ring where you could tell there once sat a cup.

The cup had been removed. Taken by its owner on a journey to find something that could fill it up faster. Every time she would find something to fill up her cup, it would somehow be gone faster than it had entered. It was as if her cup had a hole in the bottom, never to be fixed. She was constantly searching... searching for something else... something more... to satisfy her thirst.
For years she had been a wanderer, always knowing how to get home, but never wanting to go there. She had a map in her pocket, but never wanted to read it. She knew how to quench her thirst, but kept on searching for something else. It was fun to wander, it was exciting, risky, and bold... but deep down in her heart, she wanted to be held, to be taken care of, to be satisfied.

Exhausted, tired, and weak... one day, she finally fell. She couldn't do it anymore. She sat down on the dry soil, cracked and hot. She reached into her back pocket and found what she knew and yet had never used... her map. Excited for her new journey, she read the map carefully, understanding the new path that she would travel on to get home. She didn't need all the things she had been carrying, so content and happy, she picked up her map and her cup and began walking.

Drip... drip... drip... she could hear the water as she neared. Timid, she placed her cup back under the drip to catch just a small amount of water. It didn't happen right away, but as her cup sat under the water, the drips became larger and faster. Driiip... Driiip... Driiip... She couldn't believe her eyes, not only was the water going into her cup, it was staying there... it was hers. The more thankful she was for the small amount that she had, the more the water poured into her cup, filling it to the brim and overflowing it onto the ground. Pretty soon, her cup was filled, overflowing with blessings... and her heart was overflowing with love for the God that put them there.

My cup runneth over.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Butterflies in my stomach

Ok, so I currently have butterflies in my stomach due to some nervousness and anxiety. I HATE this feeling! Singing solos, big tests, first kisses... this feeling re-occurs to me every so often when things getting me nervous.

So in order to calm myself down I decided to find out what it was causing these butterflies. Come to find out, scientists say, "that the body has two brains - the familiar one encased in the skull and a lesser known but vitally important one found in the human gut Like Siamese twins, the two brains are interconnected ; when one gets upset, the other does, too. The gut's brain, known as the enteric nervous system, is located in sheaths of tissue lining the oesophagus, stomach, small intestine and colon. Considered a single entity, it is a network of neurons, neurotransmitters and proteins that zap messages between neurons, support cells like those found in the brain proper and a complex circuitry that enables it to act independently, learn, remember and, as the saying goes, produce gut feelings."

CRAZY huh? So, does that mean that when my gut says that it wants an entire roll of raw cookie dough, that I should "go with my gut" haha!

Friday, May 19, 2006


I am a foreigner, an alien, an outsider. I am not a citizen... I am merely a resident. I live and work here just waiting for the time when I can go home. This place where I now live is comfortable. I like it here, but I think it is because I don't really know what home is like. I haven't ever been home, but I know that it is going to be AMAZING when I do. I often feel alone here, in this distant land, and I wonder if I will ever fit in. It's ok if I don't fit in, because I know that I am different from this place. My heart has been molded, shaped, and changed and for that reason I am often cast away. I have to admit, I don't really want to conform to the way people are here. I know it might make life here easier, but I am proud to be the way that I am... and I am proud to call Heaven home.... I can't wait to get back home. My citizenship is in Heaven... Heaven is my home.

But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.
Phillipians 3:20-21

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Prayer warriors... on guard!

As silly as it may sound, I have been burdened with quite a bit of worry this week. I am worried about what is going to happened tomorrow, and what will continue to happen for months to come. The world will be taken by storm tomorrow with the opening of "The DaVinci Code" Movie. I have read the book, and I will be the first to admit that it is a wonderful piece of literature. I also, however know enough to know that much of the book is fictional. It is one thing to have an intelligent book present ideas to an intelligent reading audience, and it is another thing to present a MOVIE to anyone who is able to pay $8. Please pray for the hearts of the unknowing, that they will not take this fictional movie as factual, but instead that they will dig deeper to find truth. Please pray for the unsure... for Satan's plans are to hit them the hardest. Pray for the hearts of those who know what they believe, may they not waiver, but instead speak with confidence about what they know is true.

But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect
1 Peter 3:15

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Thump, Thump

Thump Thump... thump thump... thump thump... with each thump, the blood shoots throughout the body, carrying oxygen and nutrients to the cells. Each thump is vital, keeping us strong, healthy, and alive. The lifeline doesn't start on the surface, it is rooted deep within each of us at the core... the heart. The body is helpless without it... broken down... wounded.... hurt.

Ironic that the basic signs of heart attack are uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, or pain at the center of the chest. Sometimes the pain even spreads to the shoulders neck or arms. Lightheadedness, fainting, sweating, nausea, or shortness of breath are common as well. You are wondering why I said ironic, aren't you? Well, I say ironic because the hurt that we cause others can do the same thing. Hurtful words, conflict, disappointment, rejection... when we hurt those we love, it pierces straight to the core of us... deep down and into the heart, effecting the overall strength of our entire body. When we are hurting, we don't just feel it in our chest, we feel it all the way through our bodies and often into our daily life. We get stressed, we are short with others, and we feel just plain sick to our stomachs. When the heart is attacked, our quality of life suffers.

Lord, I pray today for hurting hearts. Heal them, so that they may beat even stronger with your love... a love that runs through our veins like nothing else can. I pray for resolved conflict, I pray for those disappointed and deceived, I pray for friendship to help us through... but most of all I thank you for these times in life when we feel pain, for we know that wisdom and strength are nothing more than healed pain. Amen.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


To be without flaw. To be without defect. To be without error. To be without fault. To be perfect.

Every day, from the moment we wake up, we strive to be perfect, and we fail miserably. We fail to love others unconditionally, to love ourselves fully, and to love God before all other things... we fail. Perfection does not exist for us as humans. We can always do better and we can always grow. To live life is to experiment, experience, and to learn... to be imperfect is a prerequisite. Excellence is attainable, but perfection is God's business. I am perfectly made, but I am not perfect.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Rich Man, Poor Man

The large wooden door to the bank lobby swung open and from behind the door stepped a man. He walked confidently through the lobby and towards the counter. He neared the teller and smiled as he placed his hands on the counter. His eyes were mesmerizing and his smile was warming.

"Good morning" the man said as he reached in his back pocket to get his identification.

"Good morning, sir" replied the teller, "What can I do for you today?"

"Well, I am here to transfer some money. You think you can do that for me?"

"Of course, sir." Confused, she asked for his account number. As she pulled up his account she was quickly aware that this man was not just a man off the street, he was a VERY rich man. "What would you like to transfer, sir?"

"I would like to distribute all of my money equally to the other bank accounts here at the bank."

"Excuse me?" she said, wanting to make sure that she had heard the man correctly. "You want to give ALL of your money to the other patrons who bank here?"

"Yes" he said without a single bit of hesitation in his voice.

The young teller didn't understand why in the world this extremely wealthy man would want to give away all his wealth so that others at the bank could be rich, but she had been taught to obediently take the patron's requests without question. Slowly she transferred the man's wealth equally out and deposited them into the other accounts. Slowly the man's bank account was depleted to nothing.

"So do you have a deposit to make as well today?"

"Nope." the man replied as he turned quickly to go.

With his back now to her, she yelled, "But Sir, wait! Did you want your receipt?"

"You can give it to my father" he said over his shoulder as he strolled through the lobby and toward the door.

As she waved the receipt in her hand, she realized that she too had just become rich. She banked here, and that kind man had just transfered his wealth to her.

The large wooden door was almost shut as the young teller yelled through the lobby one last time, "THANK YOU JESUS!"

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
2 Corinthians 8:9

Friday, May 12, 2006


To be a hero you must be,
Strong and wise and brave,
Fighting for the ones you love,
Never hesitate to save.

A hero fights the good fight,
For the things that they hold dear,
To shield, protect and guard against,
The things that we all fear.

I have a hero in my life,
She is my longest friend,
She's been there through the ups and downs,
To love and to defend.

She sometimes makes me angry,
We say sorry after we fight,
Although I don't admit to her,
I know she's mostly right.

Her love is unconditional,
Even when I treat her bad,
She knows and sees what's in my heart,
Despite the mistakes I've had.

My hero is what I hope to be,
I could never find another.
She is the one I look to first,
My hero, I call Mother.

Happy Mother's Day, I love you Mom!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Aim's Voice on American Idol

Ok, so I don't know if you watched American Idol last night, but if you did, you know there was a BIG STINK about Chris getting kicked off. Yup! that is right I said Chris! Everyone predicted him the favorite, and look where we are now.

How it happened: I think that America got a little too secure in Chris's victory that they decided to spend their time voting for the underdogs instead. As a result, Chris fell at the bottom.

My feeling on Chris: Ok, so I have never been one to like the rocker on American Idol, I don't really feel like the rocker belongs there. While I like rock music, I feel like the whole point of rock music is the band. Ok, lets take a look at the best in rock music... You ever heard of the Syd Barrett band, of course you haven't, that's because the band is called Pink Floyd. You ever heard of the Mick Jagger band, no way... that's because it is called the Rolling Stones instead. Jerry Garcia band... not called that, they're called The Grateful Dead. Bono band... nope, called U2. You get my point... the best in rock bands made it big because they were BANDS, not because of the lead singer! CHRIS IS A ROCK STAR SELLOUT!

My vote: I LOVE TAYLOR! I am a HUGE fan of Taylor and have been since way before the top 12! I don't care that he dances funny, I think that is what is so great about him... he has fun! He is the true definition of an entertainer. He is the black sheep of the competition and I am pulling for him! I could understand the argument that he may not be "American Idol" material, and I have to agree, I was pleasantly surprised that he has made it this far. Case and point, he pulls out GREAT performance after great performance! He is my pick for the non-stereotypical American Idol winner 2006! Sing it Taylor!!!!

So that is it... I would love to hear your thoughts. I think Chris is extremely talented, and I wish him the best of luck in his future career! Let the competition continue...

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

I am a backseat driver.

I am a backseat driver. Yup, I said it. I am cursed with type A personality.

I choose not to drive, but yet, I sit in the back of the car and I want control. I criticize where we are headed, and the path that we are taking to get there. I try to offer suggestions about the best way to get places and I am embarrased to say I even try to pull the wheel a certain direction. I willingly gave my keys to the driver and while I trust that the driver will get me there safely, I rarely trust without question. I get nervous when the driver drives to fast, and I get annoyed when He drives too slow. It bothers me that the driver doesn't get agitated when He gets cut off, or that He never looses His temper in rush hour traffic. I slam my foot into the floorboard when I get scared, and I curse through the window at other cars on the road. Why should I be so worried about driving when I am merely a passenger? I am JUST a passenger, along for the ride... the ride of a lifetime... my life... and God is at the wheel! I don't know where we are headed and I don't know how we are going to get there. I am not in control... I am not at the wheel... I am not the driver. I am a passenger in the hands of my Heavenly Father... my driver.

"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." Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

More Today Than Yesterday

Wake in the morn to see the sun,
I grow and I learn of new to come,
Working hard so I can play,
More today than yesterday.

Friends and family I hold dear,
Without their love, my fall I fear,
Strong and proud to guide my way,
More today than yesterday.

I needed something else in life,
To be a mother and a wife,
For a man to love me till I'm grey,
More today than yesterday.

Through sickness, and through healthy times,
The ups and downs that we will climb,
For many years to come, I pray,
More today than yesterday.

My heart has found it's perfect hand,
Through it all with me he stands,
Our love gets better day by day,
More today than yesterday.

Monday, May 01, 2006

An Old Friend

An old friend is like your favorite blanket, wrapping you up in comfort and warmth.
An old friend knows what will frustrate you, before it does.
An old friend hugs you when you need a hug and leaves you alone when you need your space.
An old friend calls you just to say hey.
An old friend knows your little secret addictions and encourages them.
An old friend sees you at your worst, and loves you for your better.
An old friend can pick up in conversation no matter how long it has been.
An old friend loves your faults because they make you unique.
An old friend makes doing nothing fun.
An old friend knows the little things that drive you crazy.
An old friend takes care of your fish because you won't.
An old friend just ignores you when you are a backseat driver.
An old friend makes you dance, cry, smile, live and love.
An old friend is one who you admire from afar.
An old friend walks before you when you need to be protected.
An old friend is still there, even when you forget them.
An old friend keeps you young and will be with you when you grow old.
An old friend loves the man that you love, because he makes you happy.
An old friend makes you who you are today, and will be there for your tomorrow.
An old friend doesn't just know you, an old friend knows your heart.

To my old friends who make my life complete... I love you!

Thursday, April 27, 2006


I promise I am not MIA... just engaged, hehe! and out of town as well, Charleston that is...

Sunday, April 23, 2006

I'm Engaged!!!!!!!!!

I don’t normally talk about myself on my blog, but I have REALLY BIG NEWS from this past weekend… I AM ENGAGED!!!!

Ok, here is the story. Yesterday JCR took me to the Dallas Arboretum. It was a beautiful day and the flowers were in bloom! We walked around the arboretum for almost an hour and then we stopped under a tree in the shade (it was perfect weather yesterday, about 85). JCR pulled out a journal that he had been writing in since September (when we first started dating). He read me about 15 entries and then he handed me his journal and told me to flip the last page…. this is what I found:

Shaking, I put the most beautiful ring EVER on my finger!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So…. That’s it! I am ENGAGED! I can’t believe it!

I have to admit, I keep looking down at my finger and I don’t believe my hand belongs to me!!!!

I have three thank yous...

First of all, thank you to all of you who have been supportive of our relationship from the beginning, who had faith in all that we stood for, and who knew that our hearts were meant to be together.

Thank you to both of our families for all of their love and support. I have been praying for years for a man to sweep me off my feet, but I could have never imagined that I would get to join such an amazing family as well… a family that is as loving and as supportive as mine.

Lastly, I thank God for placing JCR in my life. We have known each other since 7th grade and it just so amazing that God brought us back together at the most perfect time… a time where we were both ready to experience all that He had to give us. I am blessed to have found the most wonderful love... a love that stems from the most pefect love... God's love.

Friday, April 21, 2006

My Suitcase

I have a suitcase. My suitcase is big, cumbersome, and heavy... and yet I still carry it everywhere I go. I keep my suitcase full, but somehow I always manage to find room to squish in one more thing when I need to. I don't just carry my stuff, I carry stuff for other people too. My suitcase is old, and worn on the bottom from where I drag it behind me. The weight of the load often makes me tired, my back hurts, and I get weak... but when I fall, I usually just pick my suitcase right back up again.

Then, I saw this ad in the church newsletter about this guy who would carry it for me. I thought I would give it a try, I mean, what did I have to lose? The ad said his services were free, but I couldn't possibly imagine something like that being free. Everything has a price, right? I called Him, and we talked for a long while. I told Him about all the stuff I had in my suitcase, and He promised me that He would take care of them. As I left, I heaved with every ounce in me and I threw my suitcase up and onto His shoulders. Immediately, I felt my self lift up, light, as if standing on a cloud. I smiled and waved at Him, "I'll talk to you soon Jesus, thank you!"

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7

Thursday, April 20, 2006


Why is our world so selfish? Would living in harmony, serving your brother, be so hard if everyone did it? Instead, we are forced to be obsessed with our own selfish gain. All sin is selfish... Murder, rape, domestic violence, pornography, war, poverty, crime, drugs, adultery, STD's, prejudices.... the list goes on and on. No one ever sins for someone else... sin happens because humans are selfish! The sins don't have to be big. Why do you think we lie... selfishness. Why do you think we gossip... selfishness. Why do you think we turn away from those in need... selfishness. Why do you think we envy... selfishness. In James 3:16 it says "For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice." Selfishness is man's fundamental defect and fear is the root of it all.

"Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live."- Oscar Wilde

God sent his only Son to die for us, the most unselfish act possible, so that we could corrupt His world with selfishness?

I feel like we have all missed the point.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Question for you....

Yesterday at work I caught myself saying "OK!" JUST like Monica on Friends would say it. ( realize this may not be funny if you don't know what I am talking about)

My favorite use of the "OK" was in the episode after Monica and Chandler's wedding where Chandler lost the disposable wedding cameras and so tries to duplicate them at another wedding while Monica is at home openeing all of her wedding presents...

Chandler: You opened all the presents without me? I thought we were supposed to do that together!
Monica: You kissed another woman?
Chandler: Call it even?
Monica: Okay!
[high five]

What television character is most like you, and why?
So am I the only one who regularly relates REAL life to a television show?

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The Rose

There is unquestionably no flower as beautiful or as loved as a rose. Roses are the undisputed favorite of both growers and flower buyers alike. They come in many shades, all with a different meaning and they provide a light and sweet scent that can freshen a room. With such beauty and grace in each and every bloom, it is crazy to think that this loved flower is simply a garden shrub! Beneath the beautiful blanket of roses are the strong stems that hold the blooms up tall. Each stem is covered with thorns, typically sickle-shaped hooks, which aid the rose in hanging onto other vegetation to help growth.

So your thinking to yourself... "the thorns have a purpose?" Like the rose, we too are grown, nurtured, and cared for from the moment that we are planted. We can't expect to be beautiful from the very beginning, our gardener will have to prune us, water us and make sure that we have light. In the light, we will grow tall, and strong, reaching to the heavens... but we are never without thorns. The thorns in our lives are not there to hurt us, and they are not there to hurt others. It's those thorns that help us to climb and grow into the most beautiful person we can be.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Race for the Cure

This weekend I ran in the Susan G Komen's Race for the Cure in Ft Worth, TX along with 18,500 others. We raced for hope, for healing and for a cure.

A survivor accepts God's mercy.
A survivor battled hardship.
A survivor celebrates life.
A survivor has passion.
A survivor perseveres.
A survivor carries on.
A survivor is strong.
A survivor has hope.
A survivor is brave.
A survivor grows.
A survivor prays.
A survivor heals.
A survivor lives.

Friday, April 14, 2006

The Cross

I stood tall, and proud, reaching my branches to the heavens. My bark was thick, my leaves were green, and they rustled with the passing of the wind. I knew my purpose, what God had called me to... it was to be strong, to stand tall, and to give life.

One horrible day, God shifted my path. A man came and chopped me down. He shed me of my branches, my leaves, and my bark, and he left me with only my insides, exposed for the world to see. I was embarrassed, and ashamed. Then the man cut me into two pieces and nailed me together forming a sort of a crossed T shape. I cried to God, pleading for clarity and answers. What was my purpose to be now? What were these trials that he put me through? What was this embarrassment that had been brought upon my once happy life?

This small man was asked to carry me, miles and miles on end. I was heavy, and he fell many times as he struggled to keep walking. I wished more than anything that I could just be a tree again, standing tall and proud in the ground. When the man finally reached the top of a hill, I was placed into the ground in between two similar crosses with men hanging on them by rope. The man who had just carried me up the hill was placed on my cross, but he was not tied up with rope like the other men, he was nailed to me... arms outstretched, bleeding, and pained. I hurt. My insides had been pierced... and my heart hurt even more for this man who had been left to die hanging from me.

He prayed to my God, and then He was peaceful, as if He was dying for someone that He loved. As the last breath left his body, I finally realized why I was there. God had called me to be strong, and I found strength when I felt at my weakest. God had called me to stand tall, and I had held up my brother when He couldn't hold himself up any longer. God called me to give life, and I had helped Jesus Christ to save us, giving life to all of those who believe.

God had called me to something bigger than just being a tree.... He had called me to be a symbol of hope. I am a reminder of the crucifixion... a reminder that Christ lived and died for our sins, so that we may have eternal life.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

The Egg

She was dressed in her Easter best, a pretty pink dress with bunnies across the chest and ruffles down the sides. The family had gone to church that morning and it had finally reached the time that she looked forward to each Easter... the egg hunt. As she did every year, her mother had placed plastic eggs all over the back yard filled with various candy and toys. This precious little girl was the youngest of 4 children, and the only girl. The children entered the back yard, and their faces filled with excitement for what the Easter bunny had left them. The tiny girl grinned as she spotted a few of the eggs hidden in the grass. When Mom said it was ok to start the search, the children dashed off of the deck and onto the lawn. Again and again, the girl would run towards an egg, but just as she would get close, one of her brothers would swoop in and grab it. Egg after egg, she would try, but her basket remained empty.

The egg hunt finally died down, and the boys assembled on the porch to open their eggs and claim their treats.... but she didn't quit searching, she knew that there was still something for her. Her brothers yelled mockingly at her, "you're not going to find anything, we already got them all" and "too bad you are too slow to get any eggs, maybe you should go cry to your mommy". The little girl didn't cry, she didn't pout, and she certainly didn't stop ... she just kept searching.

After all the others had gone inside, the young girl still continued her search. Somewhere deep down, she knew that there was just ONE egg for her, one single egg with something special in it. The sun was headed down, making it harder to see, but as she scanned the yard one last time, she noticed something in the corner of her eye... it was an EGG! Quickly, she bent down and picked it up. The egg was different, white in fact, and not bright in color like eggs that her brothers had gotten. As she pulled the egg open, she was surprised to see what lay inside. It wasn't a trinket, or candy, or a toy... this egg was empty inside. There was however a small white piece of paper folded in half, as if left behind when whatever had once been inside was taken. Although she was barely old enough to read, she knew exactly what the words on the paper read. This prize wasn't to be kept tucked inside an egg, it was the sort of thing that needed to be shared with everyone. It was then that she realized that her egg really was special... it was filled with good news. She smiled as she looked at the sliver of paper again and read the powerful words aloud... "HE IS RISEN".

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

The Lamb

Baby lamb, lamb of God,
Why do you not cry?
Sent to Earth to give us hope,
To live and then to die.

Baby lamb, lamb of God,
Why sacrifice it all?
Your perfect life does not deserve,
The death to which you're called.

Baby lamb, lamb of God,
Why succumb your fate?
Atoning for the sins of man,
And wiping clean our slate.

Baby lamb, lamb of God,
Why not me instead?
I fill my life with sinful things,
Instead of being lead.

Baby lamb, lamb of God,
Thanks for what you've given.
You paid the price at Calvary,
So I can be forgiven.

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! Jonn 1:29

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Lily

It was beautiful Spring day as she strolled down the path toward her garden. The breeze was fresh and clean as it touched her face. She closed her eyes and turned her face upward, taking in the sun as it beat down onto her skin... it was warm. Nearing the garden she began to get excited, wondering if any of her flowers had bloomed. It had rained all week long, pouring down onto the hungry soil. The gate creaked as she pushed it open into the garden.

Her heart filled with joy as she look around at the beauty... stretching all across the garden were the glorious blooms of spring. The pedals were wide open, as if reaching outward to touch the flowers on each of it's sides. At the center of each flower, was the yellowest pollen, waiting to spreads out into the world sharing its beauty wherever the wind would carry it. Out from the bright yellow center were six leaves opened in the purest of white, as if touched with snow. The stalks were tall and strong, holding the flowers up proud so that everyone could see them. As she stood back in shock, she realized what was really in front of her... it was the pure radiance of the risen Lord... these were Easter Lilies.

4 Symbols

Over the next 4 Days leading up to Easter I am going to write about four Easter symbols...
the lily, the lamb, the cross, and the egg
Coming soon.

Monday, April 10, 2006


He doesn't post often, but when he does it is good... Great poem by JCR Ck it out!

Friday, April 07, 2006


I heard a story once about a parishioner who received recognition for being the humblest man in church. As recognition for being so humble, he received a pin. The next week the man decided to wear the pin he had been given. When they saw him wearing the pin, they took it away from him for being too proud. Go figure?!? The minute we think we are being humble, that is the moment when we stop being humble.

We are all given gifts from above... wonderful ones... unique ones. It is not those gifts that make us great, it is how we accept them. In Micah 6:8 it says "He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." It's with God... not in front of Him, or behind Him... its WITH Him. Humility is not denying the power or gifting you have, but admitting that the gifting is from God and the power comes through you and not from you.

It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels.
-Saint Augustine

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Mirror, Mirror

Mirror, mirror on the wall,
I feel fat, I feel tall,
Confidence and my self-worth,
In all the things of this Earth.

Mirror, mirror- I don't see,
All the things that I can be,
I want to be like models are,
Although I know, I' already a star.

Mirror, mirror- what to do?
To fix this broken image in you,
I want to see like He sees me,
The inner beauty that makes me free.

Mirror, mirror in my heart,
I am your greatest work of art,
Beautiful in every way,
Because He's inside me to stay.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


When God closes one door in life, He will open another.
for JCR Tuscany, Oct '05

Tuesday, April 04, 2006


There was a line. She had waited for a while, not sure if she was ready for what was at the front. She was a little scared, and embarrassed that she was getting used to how things were. It was easy to be this way...She didn't have to try, she didn't have to resist, she didn't have to love God. As time passed she realized that the line moved quickly the more excited she got, and when she got scared it got slower. She realized that it was up to her if she ever got to the front.... if she wanted to be there, she would be.

As she stepped forward, what she had been waiting on came into focus. It wasn't glorious, and it wasn't even pretty... it was a simple wooden wash basin filled with water. The water was the clearest she had ever seen, as if it almost wasn't even there. Now that she was in front of the basin, the line behind her had disappeared and only a man stood in front of her. He didn't say a word, but she could tell from the look on his face that he was strong, yet loving... like a father. She looked into His eyes, and for the first time she felt filthy. Stretching her arms out, she dipped them into the cold, clean water. At first her hands remained dirty, but as she rubbed them together the dirt just disappeared... not just on her hands, but all over her body. With palms facing the sky, she opened her hands to form a cup. She splashed the water onto her face, letting the water run over her eyes... refreshing her, cleansing her, purifying her.

Now clean in a way that she had never felt before, she opened her eyes again and in front of her stood that same man, this time with arms outstretched. She fell into Him... comfortable, warm, protected. He wrapped His arms around her and held her close.... so close, that she invited Him into her clean heart... to stay, forever.

Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.
Hebrews 10:22

Monday, April 03, 2006


Sitting by the pool with a good book.
Laying on the couch with a full belly.
Jogging on a Spring or Fall day.
A call from an old friend.
Drinking morning coffee.
Starbucks Green tea.
My favorite t-shirt.
Down Comforters.
Summer nights.
My fuzzy robe.
Great music.
Star gazing.
The ocean.
Red wine.
A sunrise.
A sunset.
Big hugs.

What relaxes you?

Friday, March 31, 2006

The Castle

The waves crashed peacefully into the shore. The water rushed up the beach and then back into the ocean... up and back.... up and back. A tiny girl sat at the waters edge, shovel in hand, the flat beach stretching at both of her sides. The sun was shinning down, beating warmly onto her back as she worked. She was silent, hard at work, trying to make it perfect. It was hard to tell what her creation was going to look like, but slowly with each bucket of sand, the castle took its shape. Four towers stood tall at the corners as the castle wall wrapped around the sand structure. There was a bridge arching over the tiny mote that surrounded the castle. On each of the towers she had meticulously placed windows where her Prince and Princess could look out onto their kingdom.

She stood up from her knees, and took a small step back, smiling as she admired her creation. Just as she was getting back down to make one more final touch, two small feet maliciously stepped through her castle knocking it to the ground. She could feel the anger boil beneath her as her castle was now a mere pile of sand on the beach. She didn't move, instead she just sat there, looking at the spot where her castle had once stood. Without saying a word, she picked up her bucket and shovel and returned to her knees, working again to rebuild what had been destroyed.

The playful boy had run off in the expectation that she would have chased after him down the beach yelling and screaming... but she hadn't. Surprised, he returned to her side.

"What are you doing?" he asked.
"Rebuilding my castle" she replied.
After a long pause she looked up at him standing by in shock, "if you help me I bet we can make it even better this time"
"Really?" he said confused that she would let him play, "you want ME to help you"
"Sure, why not?" she said, smiling with a love that came from deep within... the place where Jesus resides... her heart.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:17-21

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Garden State

"If you can't laugh at yourself, life's gonna seem a whole lot longer than you like."
- Sam, Garden State

That's how I feel today... all I can do is laugh.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Being Young and Growing Up

While sitting with some friends this weekend talking about life, love and the pursuit of happiness, my friend Dan said something that I can't get outta my head... He said, "Being young is thinking that you know everything, and growing up is realizing that you don't know s#@t!"

The older I get, the more I realize that I have to learn. It is so crazy for me to think back to college... I thought I had it all figured out. I was so sure of who I was, and yet I wasn't even sure of it? It was alot easier to convince others of who you were than to try to figure it out yourself. Reckless...stupid...invincible! Youth is like a game of chutes and ladders, with some people helping you up the ladders, and others pushing you down the slides. You never really know who is on your team, or which road map to follow. You question yourself, your friends, and the things you always believed in. But from the journey of youth emerges wisdom, discernment, and faith like never before.

I don't pretend to be done growing up, but there is one thing I know I have learned thus far... IT IS MINE! It's mine to screw up, its mine to learn from, and its mine to turn over to God. I don't need anyone to sit back and tell me how to live my life, its taken care of... its mine, and I choose to make it HIS.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Fashion... yikes!

I was looking back at some old pictures this past weekend. I was embarrassed by some of the fashion trends that I was sporting, 5-10 yrs ago. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy being in fashion as much as the next person. But as I was looking through these old pictures, I couldn't help but think about some of my current fashion trends that I will definitely cringe at in 10 yrs.

1. Pointy toed shoes - Heels should not double as weapons.
2. High-water pants and capri pants- Just in case there are floods.
3. Shawls/ pashmina- Wouldn't it be just as easy to carry a blanket around?
4. Popped collars - How did this trend start? Were people worried about getting sunburn on their necks? This trend is especially ridiculous when there are multiple layers of popped collared shirts! unnecessary!
5. Ugs - Especially silly when worn in 75 degree weather in Texas?!?
6. Sequin purses - Is that a disco ball on your shoulder?
7. Jeans and heels - It is a casual outfit or is it a dressy outfit?
8. Scarves - Should be reserved for warmth, right? But scarves, but no jacket? what?
9. Chandelier earrings- Is it one dangle earring, or is it six dangles?
10. Jean mini-skirts with cowboy boots - Nothing to be said... you definitely won't find pictures of me EVER sporting this trend!

If only Adam and Eve had left the apple alone?!?

Monday, March 27, 2006


Why is it in my nature to complain, to be totally frustrated when things don't go my way. Why do I argue with my superiors when I should be submitting to them? Why do I argue with my loved ones, when they are acting out of love? Why do I argue with God when his plan is different than mine?

The dictionary defines complaining as as “an expression of unhappiness, dissatisfaction, or discontent.” Basically complaining is the outward expression of discontent from within. But wait... I am not discontent with life! I love life... I love my family... and I love my God! Why would I want to act in a way that expresses to others that I am discontent, when my heart is right with God and my loved ones love me more than I deserve?

When I complain I make God displeased because I am not being thankful for all that He has given me. Regardless of whatever circumstances may cause discontent or dissatisfaction in my life, complaining is always an expression of unbelief toward God’s order in my life. My complaining opens doors for the Devil to come in and cause havoc in my life and in my heart. People don't complain because they have problems, they have problems because they complain. Complaining doesn't change anything or make a situation better, it merely amplifies frustration. I have no reason to complain. The Lord blesses me EVERY DAY! Instead of complaining, I should do just the opposite... I am to be filled with gratefulness and thanksgiving. God is Good!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

I Am Wonderfully Made

Mother Nature did not make me,
Fate and chance did not shape me,
I am wonderfully made.

It wasn’t just the DNA,
My parent’s love that had its way,
I am wonderfully made.

Before my birth out of the womb,
Beauty in me He planned to bloom,
I am wonderfully made.

He knew my likes and dislikes too,
My silence and my patience few,
I am wonderfully made.

All of the things that are unique,
Those are the things that He would seek,
I am wonderfully made.

Mother Nature did not make me,
It's God’s perfect love that shaped me,
I am wonderfully made.

You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:13-14

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Seasons change

Seasons shift, daylight waxes then wanes, as nature slowly changes her face. Autumn ushers in crisp, chilly mornings and evenings. There is a shortening of days and a lengthening of shadows. Winter creates a bare landscape bathed in bright, pure light. Spring is a time of re-growth and new possibilities. While summer is a time of long days during which the rich fullness of those possibilities can fully blossom. The changes in the seasons are like the cycles of our lives... the ups and downs, the light and the darkness, the cold and the warmth. These changes in life are what shape the very core of who we are. It's our experiences, our seasons, that make life so great, and that make our GOD SO GOOD. In each season, there is a prevalent mood that can inspire reflection. Don't miss this season... God's beauty is so often expressed in change, in growth, and in mystery.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


I was reminded of something that happened to me about a year ago... I wanted to share this story with you, it is such a great reminder to me, hopefully it will be to you as well...

Stress... I was stressed. And in a hurry. Trying to get somewhere and get there quick. I had to stop and get food. I promptly stopped in at the Subway right near my apartment and got a sandwich. I got back into my car and headed toward the highway. As I pulled up to the light near the interstate, I saw a man sitting in the median. He wasn't very old, maybe 30 or so, with a long hair and an unshaven face. He looked unkempt, but not crazy. In fact he almost looked embarrased that he was having to beg. He held a sign written on a scrap of cardboard, it read "hungry, will work for food". Without even thinking at all, I reached into the passenger chair and grabbed the Subway bag. I rolled down the window and stuck out my arm with the sandwich.

"Hey man, you hungry?" I yelled out at him. Quickly he jumped up, ran toward my car, and thanked me for the food that I handed him. I smiled, "God Bless" I said, and I rolled up my window.

Before the window was even fully rolled up, I let him in. No, not the hungry man... Satan. Satan didn't just come into my head, he bombarded it. I started stressing... even more than before. Thoughts raced through my head... "How could I have just given away my sandwich, grrrrrr! Now I am going to have to stop again!" "I am going to be even later to bible study than I was already!" "I am starving!" "You were trying to save money, now you gotta go spend another $5 on another sandwich!"

STOP...silence... what was I doing? I can't believe I just convinced myself that helping out someone in need was wrong?!? At that moment, I composed myself, and prayed.

I stopped in the shopping center near my destination to pick up another Subway sandwich. I ordered and went to pay. As I was almost out the door, I realized that I had forgotten to get my subway stamp (I don't think they have these anymore, but you used to collect 8 stamps on a card and then you would get a free sandwich). I turned around and walked back to the counter and asked the man for my stamp. "Oh, sure" he replied, as he winked and handed me EIGHT STAMPS.

As I walked away from that Subway with a sandwich in one hand and enough stamps to get me a free sandwich in the other, I realized that I had just learned one of the most valuable lessons I could have ever learned.... God will provide. To this day, I have those eight stamps hung on the wall in my bathroom so that I am reminded each and every day that serving God is not easy. Sometimes serving even requires sacrifice, but no matter what, if my heart is pure and I serve in a way that is glorifying my Lord, then I don't have to worry. I can't let Satan in.

If I am in His will... He will provide.