Friday, February 29, 2008
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Alright blog friends I MUST tell you about a theme in my life that God is speaking. It is so interesting to me. God is really speaking to me about evaluating my friendships. Does that sound crazy or what? Well, even if it sounds crazy it is what God is asking me to do. There are different friends for different seasons and reasons. As women I think it is hard for us to let go because of the emotional attachments we hold to. However it is necessary in order to have healthy relationships. We need to pray these through. We need to have "God-friends." The ones He puts into our lives. This theme has been going on for months now and has been part of the "God healing my hurts" process. Of course some things can only be between me and God so the specifics of it all I cannot disclose but the theme went like this:
12 week Bible study, "Friendships of Women."
6 week Bible study, "A Trusted Friend."
During this whole time (and much earlier yet I denied it) I have been dealing with relationship strife in certain areas. God finally opened my eyes to some really interesting things therefore calling me to evaluate my friendships. There are some new places He needs to move me and there are just the right God-appointed people He has in store to go there with me. Some cannot go there with me and that is okay.
So then, Beth Moore talks about it a few times through her "Stepping Up" videos.
I hear Dr. James Merritt Sunday Morning talking about it and even referring to Judas as a friend of Jesus. Referring to the fact that none of the disciples even knew that the betrayer was Judas. That truth was illuminating, especially when figuring out how to treat those kind of people in our lives. Really praying this through the past few days, now I am fed with the wisdom from my pastor's blog who I wrote about earlier here. Confirming another reason why it is so important to pray for them. They are God's vessels and God uses them to speak things or confirm things like this to us. His blog is worth the read on friendship here.
Anyway, God is speaking a CLEAR theme and it is nothing but a great joy to me. I can only shout "Glory."
So for those of you who made it through this post, may God bless you-It is something that I personally do not want to forget so it was really written more as a Ebenezer stone for me! Not sure if it will mean so much for anyone else but if you get something out of it too then it is a double GLORY! :)
And you know what, God has given me some unexpected blessings and friendships through you all in blogville too. We may never meet in person but we are getting to really know each other and cheer one another on on this journey. I hurt when you hurt and rejoice when you rejoice. Isn't that what friendship is anyway?
Okay here is the skinny on my week! Get it, the skinny! HA! Okay anyway, I lost another two inches! That is great. I unfortunately have not been to the gym since being back from my trip through. My friend I get to get in with was sick the first week and I did okay at home working some but now this week I really have done nothing because our schedules have not worked out and I have been bone tired! But still results. Probably because I am still really watching what I eat. That does make a difference. I am going Saturday to workout through again and will weigh in then. I am looking forward to working out again!
My time with the Lord has been GREAT! He is teaching me so much. I have shared a bit about being deeply wounded by things and people. God has been showing me where this stuff is coming from and cleansing my heart. It has been the most painful yet liberating experience. I am learning so much.
Hope you all did well, I will be checking in with you all later today! To track others click on the pear above.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
One of my favorite stories came in the mail the other day. It is a classic called, "The Little Engine that Could." So, we all sat excited while I broke open the plastic and then heard the crisp sound that you hear when you open up a brand new book. It was glorious! So, I started to read with great animation and all. My littlest started to get annoyed and distracted. As animated as I got it still seemed to make no difference. Finally she said, "This story is BORING." I said, "Why?" She responded, "All you have is a train, then another train, and another train. IT IS BORING." I told her she needed to wait for the great ending so she reluctantly complied. After the story was finished I asked them what their favorite parts were to which she replied "the end when the children get their toys! The other parts were too boring!"
Now my oldest and I enjoyed the suspense of wondering if this next train will help them? Why did they not help? Who would come to help? But apparently this is too much for a slightly ADHD mind. She just wants the short sweet facts. Interesting I tell you and something I will need to get used to. Maybe she will grow out of it. :)
To see what others are saying go here.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
I am passing this on to some blog blessings to me.
Susan is such a blessing and writes with a way to direct the reader to God. I just enjoy reading her perspective.
Sanya is such a blessing to me because I was able to meet her at the She Speaks conference,
She has such a great heart for the Lord and her blog writings reflect that. Go check her blog out.
Lauren is another blessing. I just love her depth and insight into the word of God.
Kara is a real life friend who I actually get to hand out with from time to time. She is the real deal and her blog is definitely one with the purpose of bringing glory to God.
Amy is a real life friend too. Although she does live far from me I have gotten to meet her in person. She is such a great blessing and is newer to blogging. You will love her too.
I just wanted to give you a quick shout to remind you to encourage your pastors. This is the day that they pour much out of themselves for us. They are just human, following after God's call on their life. No one would just chose this job because it is not a job for wimps! Please do not forget to pray for our pastors and other spiritual leaders.
This is my pastor, Ken Duggan. He is a huge blessing to us and our family. We are in a large church where we have other pastors too that do not need to be forgotten. Every person needs encouragement. When you pray for your pastors please do not forget to pray for their families. Do not forget to pray for your Sunday school leaders and teachers.
Many times the body of Christ does not function the way God intended. One of the things God tells us to do is encourage one another. Let us focus on that this week. If you would like to read my pastor's blog you can find the link on my sidebar.
Have a happy Sunday. Much love-Angela
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Thursday, February 21, 2008
I found this quote on Mariel's blog.
"If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world." C.S. Lewis
I have been really enjoying her blog lately. Go and check it out.
Also, another great treasure is Kathy's Blog. I always get encouragement there. She is doing a wonderful series on Jesus. Well worth checking out.
Okay well you all are such a blessing to me. I am lifting up prayers for you my siestas!
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Well, I am happy to report that things have been going well. We were out of town last week which can be a disaster for me but I did incredibly well with my eating. I do believe it is because I am more focused on this temple. With that said, I did work out in the hotel gym but did not weigh in because it was a different scale. I will check that all out when I get back to my normal gym scale this week.
My time with the Lord has been great. I am praying that everyone has a good week and experiences God in a new and more personal way this week. I cannot wait to see how everyone else is doing. To track progress click on the Pear above.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Connie is hosting a contest here. It is a writing contest and the subject is Do you have a sister or a mentor who has made a difference in your life?
It is my turn to be Hannah Montana and Miley.
No, it is my turn. You did not keep your promise.
Yes I did. It is my turn.
Moooommmmmm, it is my turn to be Hannah Montana.
Boy oh boy! Seriously guys there is two of them. You be one and you be the other then switch. I guess I need to be teaching more about our identity in Christ! :)
To see what others are saying click here.
I had to add this too. In our praise time this am (and no we don't get this in every am although I would like to) I was teaching the girls this song that I have grown to love. It is basically the words to Zephaniah 3:17-one of my favorite verses!
The words are, The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you. He will quiet you with His love. He will rejoice over you with singing, He will rejoice over you with His song.
We sang it and I asked them what song they thought God was singing over them right now. It was so sweet to hear their songs to their own melodies.
Hannah's was-Get better, Get better, please get better. -Because she has had this allergic reaction that she has been dealing with lately. :)
Kaitlyn's was-I am your daddy, I am your daddy. I love you. I love you.-How precious. Maybe she does know who she is in Him! :)
Sunday, February 17, 2008
I Realize it is squished on this format but what are your thoughts on the basics of it?
I Realize it is squished on this format but what are your thoughts on the basics of it?
Angela’s Topic’s Include:
Topics for Girls and Young Adults:
Topics for Women:
Angela has a passion for teaching women God’s word. She is
Absolutely in love with Jesus and has an authentic faith and passion that is contagious to those around her. Angela has been married to Tony, her high school sweetheart for 13 years. They have two children, Kaitlyn, and Hannah. Angela home schools her children and loves it. Angela and her family are located in Chattanooga, TN.
Angela and her husband are co-founders of the international ministry Refresh My Soul Ministries where Angela writes weekly devotionals to encourage others in their walk with Christ. Angela and her husband are Bible teachers where they have lead and built their college ministry in their home church for the last four years. Angela is also very active in her women’s ministry and teaches middle school girls in their local Awana program.
All this turmoil has inspired me to right weekly on this subject matter of suffering. I would greatly love to hear your input on it. I would love to hear your stories. Stories especially of God's faithfulness through it. I have a physical thorn that I have had for as long as I can remember. God allows it to keep me humble and truly rely on His strength. I do not talk about it much because I do not want to bring much attention to it except that God's grace is sufficient for me to carry on like Paul stated about his thorn that God would not take away.
Whatever our suffering there is always a greater purpose. It is to make us more into the image of Christ. God loves us too much to leave us the same. This life is a process of transformation. I so want to reflect Christ in everything and everyway. With that request may come much pain. So, I started to study the book of Job and look at how God used His suffering to bring about what He wanted to accomplish.
Since this is getting long I will end this here but will post more later. I will be looking at the first few chapters of Job. I hope you will join me. The first chapter of this series you can find here.
Friday, February 15, 2008
"Who is this with you?"
Her answer, "Her name is Angela but we are not allowed to call her that. She says we have to call her Mommy."
Now does that sound suspicious or what?!?
So the guy asked her if I was her Mommy.
She said yes but went into the Angela thing again. Oh, boy. Well, I suppose he bought it because he let us out. I am not sure how I feel about that? I am so thankful to our place at home where everybody knows our name! :)
Thursday, February 14, 2008
~1 Corinthians 13:4-8
"One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important
"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these."
"My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command."
the LORD's love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children's children"
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Well I am happy to say this has been a good week all around again. I have not been able to weigh in but I am so happy to report that I have lost 2 inches around my waist! That is exciting seeing how my weight loss has been small. I know my body is building muscle. Seeing those results are very encouraging.
Darlene posted about Weight Watchers today. I really enjoyed it when I did it in the past. I wanted to tell you about a really neat free program through Discovery Health. It is the National Body Challenge. There is a place to record your weight and inches and it will help you keep track of progress. There are custom workout and meal plans for you. Go check it out if you get a chance.
Another free program for weight loss is Setting Captives Free. It is a 60 day Bible study aimed at helping you see that your body is God's temple. It is really good for renewing your mind. I really liked it at first but then I was given a mentor who did not see eye to eye with me so I dropped out. But other than that I learned a lot.
Hope you all have had a good week too. To see others progress click on the pear button at the top of this post.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
As a mother I have to juggle many different hats. I suppose if I had to record all of my titles and their job descriptions I would have one heck of a resume. The longest one possible of which all moms can understand. If anyone really saw all that we do in the trenches of life they would just fall over amazed. So to add to that long resume I finally got my best title yet. Get ready for it....
In context, "Mom, will you be the butt-wiper today? I have diarrhea."
Hmmmm.....Need anymore explaintion?
To see what other tiny talkers are saying visit Mary.
Monday, February 11, 2008
My story is funny because I could never picture myself as one of "those people" who homeschool. I had a stereotype in my head about it and the people who did it. It was another thing I would "never" do. Well, God is so funny that He had big plans for us in doing this. I do not believe home schooling is best for everyone. I know I will get flack about saying that from some in the trenches with me. But the fact remains that each child is an individual who was crafted by God's hands. He knows what is best.
I have a dear friend who really wants to keep her children home and home school them. God has instructed her that is not His purpose for them at this time. So out of obedience she sends them to school and trusts God with that. I, like her, feel so insecure keeping them home and teaching them. It is was God has instructed me to do for whatever reason that He knows and I am not to question Him. God rewards obedience. Period. Neither one of us knows how long our situations will stay the same. It is something we have to seek God's wisdom in year after year.
So what is your take on this? Why do you do what you do?
Saturday, February 9, 2008
I just have to say I am very excited at the moment! On Super Tuesday Mike took Tennessee and most of the southern states. Today, Mike Huckabee just won the Kansas caucus! It would be great for him to win. I know it looks impossible by what all the news peeps say but nothing is impossible if God wills it. He is just an ordinary guy (which is what most of us are) who represents what most "real" people are. He can relate to what "real Americans" most need. That is great representation as president. Isn't that what the democratic process is about? By the people for the people.
It is a David and Goliath challenge. I am so rooting for the underdog here. I really admire him for keeping up the race and standing up for what he believes in. Oh that our nation would see that the thing we need is God. Lord please have mercy on us. For we are just sinners saved by grace. This is the kind of servant we need running our country.
"if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place." 2 Chronicles 7:14-15
About 6 and a half years ago I was working in one of the best ministry settings you can imagine. I was finally doing what I wanted to do. I had success in my field in my eyes. I was very satisfied. Then that "Prayer of Jabez" book came out. Well, my husband and I began praying that prayer and expand our borders is what God did! He sure expanded my body into having our first child!
I was so excited yet I had dreams of pursuing my doctorate in my field. I had been accepted to several of the colleges of my choice. All things seemed to be working out. I was torn. What about this little life that God was entrusting to me? My husband worked full-time too. How would we make all of this work?
Over those 9 months God did a great work in my life. He showed me places where I was being selfish. We could survive on one income if we really wanted to. That is a blessing. Not everyone can do this. That doctorate I wanted to pursue was really for selfish reasons. I wanted the success and title. I of course would never admit that to anyone but that is what was in my heart.
Letting go of all that I put my identity in was a miserable grieving process. It was a death. Death always has to come before life. I was dying to myself and my selfish ambition. God had important things to do with me and this little bundle of joy He was entrusting to me.
I suffered a year finding out where my identity rested. I felt unvalued. In the world's eyes I am. Yet, there are times in our lives when God calls us to bigger things. Beth Moore states it like this, "In God's economy the way up is down." That explains it quite well. Unfortunately the one who holds the house together and choses this route which is the best for the family does not get recognized even by the tax breaks that are being sent out in May. Interesting world.
Over those next years I cannot tell you how wonderful this "job" has been to me. My rewards are not worth anything on this planet. Except the joy that comes from investing and spending my time with my children. Pouring my life into theirs. My husband is a HUGE part of this as well. We both died to our selfish dreams to really invest in our family. It is a season that flies by so quickly. It is what God has called us to do.
If you are one of those women out there who cannot stay home please do not take this the wrong way. I have so much love for you. Some people do have to work. I understand that. I admire you for that. It seems that for some reason mother's always feel guilty. If you work you feel guilty. If you stay at home you feel guilty. Let's just call that what it is. It is LIES. Anything that makes you feel condemned IS NOT from God. Never forget that. The world is hard enough to live in these days. Let's just submit our families to God, listen to Him, and walk in His ways. He will direct our steps. Those steps include loving our families and making them a priority. No matter what situation we are in that is the key. Love.
So, how we made it work is only a testament to God's grace. We were drowning in debt. God took care of it in miraculous ways that just came our way. An inheritance check. Raises. Extra jobs. Spending less. Cutting coupons. With each sacrifice we made, He brought something new into our life. Where we died, He gave a blessing. God is truly Jehovah-Jireh. He is the one who provides our every need. He lives up to His name. He never changes. Some of the steps we had to take were completely on faith. We had no idea what would happen but we were obedient to what God called us to do. With obedience comes blessing. That is just the way it works. God is good and never changes.
I now have been called to home school these children. It has turned out to be a great blessing. I am loving it more and more every day. Sure there are days I want to just run away and have a break. But the rewards to sticking to it are great! God blesses obedience. Just listen to Him and what He has called you to do and follow. He will provide the rest. As the old song goes, "Just trust and obey. There's no other way."
So how bout you? What's your story?
Friday, February 8, 2008
I thought this might be a fun question to ask you all. Where is it you may be now if it was not for God's grace in your life?
I was a strong feminist. I said I would NEVER get married. I also did not think much of children. I also thought those people in church raising their hands were weird. I was a complete mess. Now, thanks to God's grace and humor, I am a madly in love with Jesus, wife who adores her husband, stay at home mom who adores her children, and home school teacher! Talk about a complete turn around from what I would NEVER be! :) I love it.
I just love grace stories, How about you? Where has God shown His grace to you? Let's give God some praise!
Thursday, February 7, 2008
So this am I was over at Robin's blog and she had an awesome story along with Psalm 51. Well, immediately the Holy Spirit illuminated these verses to me:
"12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you."
This was such an answer to prayer. God just always gives us what we need in His living and active Word. It just makes me want to shout! God has been restoring to me the joy of my salvation as I posted below. I have been asking Him if I will ever be able to teach again after all this yuck and hurt I have been going through. Really if I will ever be able to pray like I had in the past or will I let the enemy keep me down?
Then this verse just lit up before my eyes. I have prayed this Psalm many times but never noticed the "then I will....." part. It says, "then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will turn back to you." That is just the desire of my heart that others will turn back to God, like me. Others in the trenches of life on this earth. I do not care where we are or in what setting. Oh just to teach others about God's goodness in the shopping line, at Chuck E. Cheese, or a conference. What a blessing! To top it off I have been asked to teach at a prayer retreat. Through this I know God is up to something. God is so good to restore and repair our brokenness and frailty. I am so thankful to be in His very capable hands. He will never leave us for forsake us(Joshua 1:5)! That is His divine promise.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Well, it has been another good week. Whenever I continue to picture this body of mine as God's temple it just seems to help me in all areas. I have been drinking more water and eating much better. I continue to work out atleast 3 times a week at the gym with my great friend, Shannon! I did weigh in today and was down only another .5 pound. Does that really count? So the total is 5.5 pounds less. I am also happy to report that my heart is recovering much better now too. I know this activity is making me stronger. Praise God for the endurance.
The best part is that I am finding a new love for my Savior. I have suffered over the last few months with much pain and emotional turmoil. God is restoring the joy of my salvation. I am falling so much more deeply in love with Him. That is another huge component of living well! With that said God has laid some pretty important and exciting decisions and opportunities in our lap. We just want to do the right thing and follow Him. Please lift a prayer for us that we will not lean on our own understanding. Thanks ladies. I am loving this journey with you.
To track others progress go here.
Monday, February 4, 2008
I am not sure what it is about Valentine's day but really it is a day that my husband and I do not celebrate. My man's excuse is that "everyday is Valentine's day with me." My response is, "yeah right that is just an excuse."
Seriously though, why do we make such a big deal about this one day in the year? We are charged to love by God. That is a 24/7 year round thing. Why just one day of focus? So, call me a Valentine hum-bug if you like. We just do not celebrate this one.
Everyday really is Valentine's day here though. We do truly seek to love each other to the fullest measure. We strive to think of and show our love daily. To me it is much more special to receive a gift on a random day just because than on the day it is expected. It just works better this way for us.
So I leave you this not just for Valentine's day but for everyday:
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."
~1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
For more Marriage Monday go here.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
~Aneurin Bevin, Brittish political leader
We have some really big decisions that need to be made here. Will you please just lift a prayer for us? Thanks!
Friday, February 1, 2008
You all are so funny. I loved your various comments about what you would do with the book and card! I wish I could give one away to each one of you. You have all made me smile in one way or another. Thanks so much for entering.