Thursday, April 27, 2006
Sunday, April 23, 2006
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
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
"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
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?
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
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
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
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 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
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
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.
Monday, April 10, 2006
Friday, April 07, 2006
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.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
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
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
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.
Monday, April 03, 2006
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.
My fuzzy robe.
What relaxes you?