Saturday, June 28, 2008
Hey all. I am going to start a Bible study pilot for a study that I wrote. It is called Abundant Grace: Lessons from the family. It takes a look at our family line through Christ and what lessons we can learn from them. I would love anyone to join who is interested. I will then get the material to you and once a week we can discuss it on the blog. I may also put a podcast together to listen to as well. It is set up like a 6 week Bible study and there is homework for each of five days in the week. The homework should not take anymore than 20 or 30 minutes to complete. It would be a great lighter summer study. I am really looking for feedback and things to enhance this study. I want it to be one that transforms our lives and makes us more like Christ through the process.
If you are interested please email me by clicking on the contact us button on my sidebar. I would like your email address and I will send out the weeks work. Thanks so much in advance.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
"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).
It used to be the sacrifice that was required for gas was the horrible smell that came from the back side of someone that you would have to smell for a moment and politely hold in the words that you wanted to say. Like, "Eww, you stink" or "You could have warned a girl!"
My other experience with gas is the horrible cramping pain it can cause in ones stomach when things just don't sit right-you know what I am saying?
Well, for the first time gas has caused some deep heart ache and I am not talking from heart burn. I am talking from heart break. After realistically assessing the finances it would take to participate in a wonderful family reunion and I am talking reunion of a lifetime. A reunion with not only bunches of relatives and family friends that I most dearly love but a reunion with my grandmother I posted about a few months back that has been found. It has been about fifteen years since I have seen her. I fear I will now not get a chance to.
You see, I went to the She Speaks conference in Charlotte, NC this past weekend. It was a ministry event and I was so thankful to God for providing it. But the unexpected expense of gas for my tank was unimaginable. I spent $160 dollars on gas and all the driving I did was to and from the hotel and my house. Can you believe it?! I know you can because we are all there now.
This Friday I was suppose to leave on an even farther trip. But due to our finances we had to cancel it. The cost would be too much financially for us to bear. You see, God tells us to leave no debt outstanding except the debt of love (Romans 13:8). Because of this and how hard we have fought to get and stay out of debt, we had to make the sacrifice of this trip.
Now, sadly many are disappointed. I too am disappointed. Gas has caused much heart ache and again pain. But do not be sad. God does honor those who honor His word in obedience. I am believing God to restore to us this time that is being challenged by these rising fuel costs. Never before have we had to cancel a trip but the times are changing.
Father, we know that You provide our every need. We thank You for that. Though life comes with certain disappointments I know You will honor the sacrifices we make in obedience to You. Even when it hurts terribly. Thank You for being our comforter and our ever-present help in time of trouble. Please help us to remain in unity with those who have been disappointed. In Jesus Name.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Hey! I just wanted to let you know that you can now subscribe to the weekly devotions from P31 Ministries, A Radical Revolution. So please spread the word and sign up if interested. I have one coming up on July 11th. So watch out for it.
Monday, June 23, 2008
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Sorry I have not been blogging much lately. Like I said earlier things are so busy this summer it seems! Anyway, Friday My best traveling buddy Kara and I are heading to She Speaks. I cannot wait to meet you all. This is our second year so if you want to know anything just let us know. This group of women at this conference had to be the most loving I have ever encountered. I do not anticipate anything different this year. If you are going would you come up and say hello?
BTW-this pic is about a year old! :) It was from another college ministry trip. I will probably not be updating until I get back but I am hoping to get to visit your blogs before I go.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Waterballoon aftermath. We went through 250 balloons!
Girlfriends winding down! That box in the back is a
new ceiling fan going in. Yes there are
seven kids. I did have a wonderful 12
year old helper though and the grace
of God! :)
This was the bucket of prizes.
So what's the occasion? SUMMER! With summer time comes lots of summer fun and lots of children all around. What a blessing. Hope your summer is filled with these blessings too!
Monday, June 9, 2008
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Here are just a couple of fun pics of some of our wacky adventures. This one was from an event I spoke at and I got them to do the worship. They were just cheesing it up for this pic, it was not live. We just laugh so much.
Here is a pic of paint ball! Another activity they wanted to pull us into! I had to sit that one out I just knew someone had it in for me. :)
College ministry is a wonderful ministry. At the wedding we got to see a few people who have moved on that we do not get to see much and we just had a great time. I love it when God gives us those moments. It may be even more sentimental for me because God has currently told us to take a break from this ministry. So we are obediently doing that. It had been over four years so the break is good. We love them all so deeply.
This is the first of four weddings I have on my schedule.
So, Since this post was so long I will try to get some pics from our wedding and post next for marriage Monday. Be patient with me because I need to use the scanner and all that techie stuff.
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Well, there is no excuse for this because I am a new creation in Christ despite my feelings about it. It is truth. If you are His then you are a new creation too. So, the problem, how do you walk in the Spirit anyway while battling with this beast? It seems that as I get older this battle becomes harder and harder. Anger and irritability are at their high. Back pain and bloating are horrendous. Now to add icing to the cake I am actually starting to have the joy of hot flashes! Give me a break already. One thing I can honestly say is that at least this joy of womanhood is showing me my desperate need for God. And I am talking face on the floor can not get up desperation.
So with that said I think that we should be able to wear some sign that says something to warn others-we girls would understand that-maybe it would spurn us on to buy one another chocolate. We could easily pray for one another then. We get it. It would not be an excuse for unkind behavior just a warning to stay clear so it would come out of us less often. We could warn our men to just stay clear while the sign is out. We could encourage them to not worry because their wonderful wife will be back real soon. It would make life easier and much more predictable for those who just do not understand.
Well, that is where my head is today. I just got back from a wedding-Our first set of college students got married today. It was so precious. I will post more about it next and post about our marriage for Marriage Monday which I am about a week late for.
Friday, June 6, 2008
After showing us the MRI's and explaining everything we were looking at the doctor determined that Chiari is not the condition Tony has-they problem is actually with a vertebrae. How will this situation be fixed? With patience and physical therapy! What a praise. We go from possible brain surgery to physical therapy. This is from the mouth of a surgeon. Praise God. So, the process will be long and potentially painful but it will be worth it.
Do keep praying about that spot on the brain that was found because some neurological symptoms persist. In a few months we will be reviewing that but we are thinking it is not anything to be concerned about.
Sunday, June 1, 2008
Hey all. I am participating in a blog tour to support a fellow Christian writer. This is an interview with the author, Michael Dellosso. His book is called, The Hunted, and is scheduled for release on June 3rd. You can purchase it here. The interview follows:
Where did you get your idea for The Hunted?
The idea for The Hunted came from the internet. I was surfing one day just looking for ideas or something to spark my imagination and get the wheel churning when I came across this story of a small town in Indiana that reported lion sightings back in the 1920’s. Several of the townsfolk said they saw an African lion in the fields surrounding the town. A couple cows were mauled and eaten. Then the sightings just stopped. No one knows where the lion came from or where it went. I thought it was a pretty neat idea and ran with it. Story born. Happy birthday!
What are some of the underlying themes in The Hunted?
Themes are something else, aren’t they? An author can write a story expecting to convey one message and then, when the book’s done, look back and find he’s actually conveyed several messages and none are the one he intended. And then someone can read the book and get something out of it totally different from what the author thought he conveyed.
Okay, so what themes were you thinking about when you wrote the book?
So, here’s what I think the themes are, what I wanted the themes to be when I wrote the book (whether anyone actually finds these themes is another story entirely, and I’m okay with that, really I am, as long as they get something meaningful out of it). One theme is the idea of not putting God in a box, of letting Him be God, letting Him work in your life and do some miraculous things. I think too often we put a leash on God and tell Him what He’s allowed and not allowed to do. That’s not our place. God can do anything He wants to do. He’s the one in charge, remember?
Okay, enough of that. The second theme is the danger of a vengeful heart. Vengeance is a powerful thing; I think that’s why God said He’d take care of it. In the hands of mere mortals, it’s a deadly poison, able to consume a man and turn him into a monster. Revenge is not something we should try to harness. We have no business playing with that fire. In The Hunted we see the end result of a vengeful heart unbound.
Lastly, there’s the theme of forgiveness and acceptance and redemption. Beautiful things we experience from the heart our Heavenly Father and pass on to others.
Why did you choose to write supernatural suspense?
Because I’m weird. No, not really . . . well, maybe. Plenty of people think I am weird after reading my stories. It was a natural gravitation for me. I grew up loving The Twilight Zone and The X-files and any kind of monster movie. I’ve always been intrigued by legends like Big Foot and the Loch Ness monster. The unexplained has always fascinated me. I honestly can’t see myself writing anything else. I have so many ideas now, but maybe when I exhaust them I’ll try my hand at something else . . . maybe westerns.
With which character do you identify most and why?
Boy, that’s a tough question. I think each of my characters have a bit of me in them; I’m a composite of each of their personalities. Yes, that means there’s even a little of me in the psychopath bent on revenge—and that really scares my wife. I think the character with whom I identify the most, though, is Joe Saunders, the agonist. Joe is complex and real in that he struggles on a daily basis with his faith and how God works. He’s got God in a box and has set neat little boundaries and guidelines for what God can and can’t do and how He can and can’t work. And if I’m not careful I can fall into that same trap. When I put God in a box I miss out on witnessing those strange and mysterious ways He works. During his journey, Joe has to learn to let God loose and trust Him to take care of things in His way, not ours. That’s a lesson I need to review every day. Now, that’s not to say I identify with Joe in every way. He’s much braver than me. There’s no way you’d get me to go hunting a man-eater in a fog-blinded woods. I’m too much of a fraidy-cat.
How much research did you do for The Hunted?
I have to admit, I’m not a research-aholic like some authors are. I honestly don’t like it. One well-known author once suggested to do enough research to make the story believable. Readers want a good story, not a textbook or how-to book. I try to keep that in mind. Are all the details of everything in my story right on? Probably not. Is it a good, entertaining story with a solid moral message? I sure hope so!
I’m not a hunter and don’t own any guns so I did research on different weapons and how they work. I did a fair amount of research on lions and their behavior and on man-eating lions. I also read up on schizophrenia and the common behavior of schizophrenics. Then there was the normal research on the fauna and flora of central Pennsylvania, sunrise/sunset, moonrise/moonset, that sort of thing. The research I enjoyed the most was that on lions. Did you know a lion’s roar can be heard up to five miles away? Or that lions are lazy beasts and really don’t want a fight so they go for the back of the neck first to paralyze their victim? And then there were stories of man-eating lions in Africa—just creepy stuff.