Monday, August 31, 2009

Praise the Lord

For me this is the last week of summer hours. Hooray! I stated earlier that I do not care for this schedule. Even getting off at noon on Fridays did not seem to make up for working four days of nine hours each. I think it will be easy to slide into regular hours because this will be the last half Friday I will work and then next Monday is Labor Day. So that will be nice.

Yesterday I was reading Psalms and found Psalms 149, as I am thinking about choir practice and everyone singing. This passage talks a lot about singing and praising God.

Praise the LORD!
Sing to the LORD a new song,
And His praise in the congregation of the godly ones.
Let Israel be glad in his Maker;
Let the sons of Zion rejoice in their King.
Let them praise His name with dancing;
Let them sing praises to Him with timbrel and lyre.
For the LORD takes pleasure in His people;
He will beautify the afflicted ones with salvation.
Let the godly ones exult in glory;
Let them sing for joy on their beds.
Let the high praises of God be in their mouth,
And a two-edged sword in their hand,
To execute vengeance on the nations
And punishment on the peoples,
To bind their kings with chains
And their nobles with fetters of iron,
To execute on them the judgment written;
This is an honor for all His godly ones.
Praise the LORD!

That is what I love to do the most; Praise the Lord! He has been so good to me and my family. I want to give back what I can for him and singing is one way I do it. I hope that you can find your own way to praise God. Whether you use your singing voice, do random acts of kindness, tell others about God, I hope you do it.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Another Birthday!

Well, tomorrow is my Dad's birthday. He will be 67. It's a relief to say that. This as you know has been the hardest year I have ever seen him go through. There have been some hard years. Like when his Dad died. He went into such a funk for a long time over that. But who wouldn't?

This year has also seen some wonderful times. I know that's hard to believe but I try to see the good in almost everything. This year our church really has pulled together and made it easy for us to love them and feel loved. It has brought Dad and Mom some faithful and caring friends that proved themselves. I believe it brought my family closer too in many ways.

Dad, Allie and I got to go to Washington D.C. for a trip we will never forget. We just found out about his cancer and had not really coped with it and he had not started his treatments. We didn't even know what the rest of the year would bring, but we definitely made the most of that trip. Even though Dad and I didn't really talk about anything in particular or get too serious, it was a trip we had always wanted to take. Now he is talking about going back when Timm goes. Wouldn't that be great? Timm, Mike and Dad in D.C.. Timm is looking forward to that.

All my life, I have been Daddy's little girl. In fact, one of our exchange students said that we were "Xerox copies". We are so much alike in so many ways. My attitude is like his, my outlook on people and life are like his, and my sense of humor is like his. I am proud to be his daughter.

He has shown me what a father should be like and that has helped me all my life imagine what God, as a father, is like too. I think he has made it easy for me to accept that God is my father and that he loves me, all because Dad loves me. I love him too, and hope that he has many more birthdays to come!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Get Your Routine Going

Last night, the kids gave me lots of paperwork to fill out and then surprisingly, went to bed early. The excitement of the day wore them out. Mike looked at me at 9:45 and said, "I think I am going to like the kids in school." Ha, ha. I don't think it will last long. They will both be in their routine soon enough.

Routines can be good. It gives you confidence and a sense of familiarity. It also makes light of a lot of work. Routines can also be bad. You get complacent, lazy, and then you start skipping. Change in routines make for interesting times. I usually anticipate a change in routine and plan for it. I can live with that. But if it is something that I just run into, and then it keeps happening, I evaluate what is going on and if it is something I can live with or need to really change.

I knew about the summer schedule at work. I didn't have a choice and tried to adjust schedules. It was okay, but I am so ready to work 8 hours a day again. I want to be home at a decent hour with my family. I anticipated school starting and have adjusted my morning routine to include getting the kids' and Mike's lunch packed, breakfast ate and everyone up and at 'em. It is only the second day, but it is working. I didn't anticipate more vehicles on the road yesterday. I was almost late for work. So this morning, I left earlier. It's not a compromise. It is more about peace of mind and not being late.

Proverbs 14:30 A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.

I think this verse says a lot. So I think about my routine, how to make it all work and I don't get anxious or worried. I pray and talk with my husband about it when I need to. I hope you work on your routines. Add an extra time with God and fellowship and worship with your church family. We always make time for what we want to do, not what we needed to do.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A prayer For the Youth

Dear Lord,

Today I pray for all the youth of this world. I pray for your loving and caring hands to touch each of them and keep them. May the path they are on be in Your will or may some who loves you love them and lead them loving to You. May peer pressure be something they depend on You to deal with and may their lives be forever changed by You.

Keep each child from harm and may there always be someone to love them dearly as you have loved us.

In Jesus Name,


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Being a Supermom vs. a Super Mom

You know it's going to be one of those days when...

1) the food you bought last night at the store was still in the bags on the table this morning. The yogurt and ham are ruined. It was brought in, but never put away. I thought about it at midnight, but thought, surely someone put it away. Nope. So now I need to go buy more tonight.

2) when your boss calls you and says, "I am going to be late." She wasn't very late, but still, she was late. But she stays later too.

3) when you can't think of nothing special to write about for your inspirational devotion.

I am happy that school starts tomorrow. Maybe a better routine for all of us will help. I am in a place right now where I can't seem to motivate myself to do anything. Ever been in a place like that? I get up, get ready for work, go to work, come home, help with supper, do dishes, talk with friends, watch tv and go to bed. I don't have anytime for me, which is fine because I am pretty boring and I don't know if I even want to be with myself. I have done a few things for me lately. I have been reading more. We bought me a "crossover". It's not a car or a SUV, but it's in between. Now that I put this in writing, that is a lot. I mean, wow, a FORD Edge? I'll be paying on it forever. I do love driving it. I still feel, well like I am missing something? I thing it is my routine. It is only going to get crazier starting tomorrow.

Tomorrow, I have to get the kids up and out the door around the time I leave. Luckily, Mike is off tomorrow and Thursday, so there won't be four of us vying for the bathrooms to brush teeth, straighten/comb hair, eat breakfast, pack lunches, etc. Tomorrow evening I will probably have homework. I call all the forms I have to fill out for the kids that.

I am still in a state of disarray because choir starts next week. I am not ready for that either. We are going to do an old cantata, which will be fun, but probably not hard enough. In the middle of Wednesday choir practices, the boy's football games will start and be on Wednesdays. I can't do it all and I think that pressure is starting to build in me.

So what's a parent to do? The only thing I know will work. Pray. Look at my schedule. Talk to my kids and support group. I am sure that I will not make all the football games, but I sure am going to try to make as many as possible. I will be there to support the kids in everything they do, but keeping them turned toward God.

Proverbs 15:21 Folly delights a man who lacks judgment, but a man of understanding keeps a straight course.

Lord, help me not to try and be supermom, but a super Mom. Keep me on the straight and narrow so I can keep my kids there too.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Do you like have people come over to your house for a visit? I love having people come over. I love opening my house up and having people come in. My home is a home of love and comfort. I hope people see that in me. I am the worst housekeeper, but love to have people over. I hope people feel comfortable and inviting. I am not anywhere like Martha Stewart or Miss Manners. I do enjoy entertaining and eating with people. 1 Peter 4:9 )Be hospitable to one another without (R)complaint.

Do we complain about having to entertain others? Do we show hospitality to strangers? Opening your door to strangers is so much harder. But maybe you do not have to actually be hospitable at your house. Helping out in a soup kitchen or at the free store and just being helpful and respectful of those you don't know is good.

But as our preacher said in his sermon, you have to find your talent and use it. I say "Use it or lose it!" Sometimes I feel I don't do enough. But everyday you can find a way to help. Bring in snacks for the hospital. Buy extra school supplies. Every way that we as a church can help out others is being hospitable.

Friday, August 21, 2009

How AAA saved my life, well my pride.

Here is two stories that happened this week. One is about me and one is about a little boy that I use to watch.

K-J is almost 3 years old. He has beautiful curly hair and a face you just want to eat up. The other day, his Grandfather, Grandmother and siblings went to the WPAFB Museum. They were going up an elevator and K-J, being the curious little boy, pushed the red emergency button. Well, that caused an evacuation of the whole museum. His sister said that it was one of the funniest things, but I bet the 500 other people there were not as happy. Of all the terrorist in the world, a 2 year old caused this!

Okay, here is my story.

Last night, I was sitting in the back of my new Ford Edge watching football practice, reading and talking with another parent. The day was dreary and darkening clouds were rolling by, threatening rain and grumbling with thunder. Flashes of lightening littered the sky, and the boys and coaches ran in to the locker rooms. After about five minutes, the boys still had not come back out, so I text my son.

ME: Whatcha doing?
HIM: Talk chalkin' over plays.
ME: Ok.

The rain started coming down in big, fat drops and the other parent jumped in their vehicle. I was sitting in the trunk area enjoying the weather. It started picking up and I decided I had better close the trunk so my legs don't get completely soaked. As I did that, I slowly lowered it and tried to stop it from just clicking shut. Nope. It latched. I pushed on the door and it stayed in place. Ok", I think. "How do I get this open without all these other parents realizing I am locked in the back of my car?" I look around and realize that I can not scoot over the top of the seats. I look to the left; nothing. I look to the right; nothing.

At this point, I text my daughter and my husband.

ME: I have locked myself in the back of the Edge. lol.

Then I see it. A small rectangle piece in the door that looks like it can come out. I try to pop it off with my fake thumbnails (because right now my thumbnails are they are the only long nails I have). They are too wide. I try a key (at least they are with me). Nope. So then I look at my keyring. On my very round and big keyring, I have a AAA card, you know like the little gas cards or other store cards you put on them. It is very thin. I put that against the rectangle and it pops right off. I put my fingers in very gently and feel around. "That is not the right place, oh, that piece goes down. Now if I push the door as I press on that piece..." A rush of relief went through me. I had unlocked the mystery, without any strangers noticing.

HER: Seriously?
ME: Yeah, but it's okay, I figured out how to open it up.

At this point her BFF called me and asked if I needed them to come and get me out. I just laughed and said, "No, I figured it out. But it is kinda funny, huh?" I am sure they were rolling their eyes at my antics.

Laughing is the best medicine.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 - 8

1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:

2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy Birthday

Today is my husband's birthday. He is 47 years old. He doesn't seem like it, does he? He seems younger to most people, but not the kids. They think he is ancient. Isn't that what most kids think of their parents?

Today he had to go to work. He said it was tempting to call off, but that really isn't his style. He has a sense of duty to those he works with. He is dependable and always comes up with good ideas. He is very sensitive and he is very caring and loving. I am very lucky to be married to him.

Tonight there will be ice cream with our kids and their friends. The kids and I thought we were taking him out to supper after football practice, but he decided he wants to do that before the football scrimmage tomorrow evening. So it will be Mike, Timm, Allie, and our two adopted kids-friends. He suggested it, not us. Allie made a comment about this evening being "family-time" and Mike said "Oh, I thought we would just do that Friday night. But if you really want to do something, I have been craving ice cream. I figured we would just go down to the UDF and get some after practice." One of our adopted kids-friends was there and he told her she was included too. Then Allie got excited that maybe Austin could go too. So we will see. I think Mike suggested that because he really wants his kids to be happy and he knew Allie's day wasn't too good yesterday (that's for another day).

So add kindness, caring, and thoughtfulness to the list of characteristics that make up Mike. He has been such a blessing in my life and in the lives of my family. I thank God for him every day.

Galatians 5:22 - 23 "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

He is still working on some of these, but others he has down pat!

Happy Birthday, Mike!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Decisions, decisions, decisions

May I say that changing your mind is not something that makes you seem stable? I mean, yes, they say it is a woman's perogative to change her mind, but do you really need to be that wishy-washy? I am pretty wishy-washy on some areas, but I have to say that I try to stick by my guns as much as possible.

I am surprised by the crazy decision of the football player, Brett Farve. Two years ago, he retired from football after have such a phenomenal career. Then last year, he made a comeback, doing a pretty impressive job with another team. Then Mr. Farve, again made a decision not to come back. Now he is coming back with again a new team! It's kind of crazy! My husband thinks that he just wants another "Superbowl Ring". Well I say, Coach! Less hurting on your body and still get a lot of glory. Don't say you are going to retire, have the big party and then, change your mind! There are many other things you can be good at. It looks not good that he has not changed his mind once, but twice. When is enough, enough?

I hope that if I started flip-flopping decisions around that someone would set me down and talk to me about it. I am sure lots of people are talking, but is anyone seriously talking to him? The verse that comes to mind is James 5:12 "Above all, my brothers, do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. Let your "Yes" be yes, and your "No," no, or you will be condemned." Maybe we all should let our decisions be decisive. That is what I am aiming for.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Anxiety Trip

Yesterday, Dad and Mom went to the radiation doctor. He's the doctor who's been monitoring Dad the closest. So I have some updates for you. First, his PET scan will be September 4th. This is the scan that will tell if there is any cancer anywhere else in his body. They will get the results of that on September 11th. Then on September 8th, they will go for either a consult or the removal of the peg tube. I know Dad is hoping they remove it. So this is good news.

Dad ate a six-inch sub Sunday for lunch. That is awesome. The biggest problem he is facing is that because he hasn't really eaten since March, he isn't that hungry and doesn't think about eating unless someone reminds him. The thing is before the cancer, he only ate a couple of cookies with his coffee and supper. Maybe a piece of fruit for lunch during the week. So I am not really worried about that.

Anxiety is a funny thing. It can make you sick to your stomach, it can make you unable to concentrate on the task at hand, and it can leave everyone around you uneasy. In our family, there has been a lot of anxiety in the past few months because of several things. Family members having problems, injuries, and physical and mental health of my parents. But as you all know, I try to hold a strong faith in God and I know that he will carry all of us through these storms.

Psalms 94:14 "When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul."

Pray for Mom and Dad during this time. Pray that God's healing hand is on them and that His will will be done through them.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Somebody's Always Watching...

In our Sunday School class, we are studying the encounters of Christ. Each one of them take on a different meaning for the person to whom it happened and to me as I listen and read. One of my favorite encounters is something we just touched on in the end of class yesterday, the Widow's Mite. I have read and heard that story many times, but this little piece of the story didn't hit me until yesterday. The first verse, which is Mark 12:41. It states, "And He sat down opposite the treasury, and began observing how the people were putting money into the treasury; and many rich people were putting in large sums."

The very first part of that verse says that Jesus sat down and observed people and what they were doing. Whoa! Jesus was watching people? He's a people watcher? That means he actually is watching me! Uh, I better straighten up in my chair. I need to act like I know what I am doing. I need! That's the gut reaction, right? But if I am not doing anything wrong, why am I feeling so guilty? The world says "innocent until proven guilty," but I think most of us know that the world goes by "guilty until proven innocent." Isn't that the way we all think sometimes. We jump to conclusions, judge people without really knowing, and yet, we expect the opposite of everyone else. Shame on us!

Matthew 7:1 - 6 "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. 3"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4How can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye. 6"Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces."

Let's remember these words of Jesus and make sure when we are watched, we can be calm and assured of ourselves.

Friday, August 14, 2009


I am in a really good mood today. I want to just sing and be happy all day. Now, that may not fly with some people, but I feel it's a choice. I have a great God, great family and friends, and a good attitude. This is a busy weekend, but not so busy that I can't find time for everything. Busyness is a state of mind. Someone once told me how they didn't know how I could fit everything in to my schedule. I laughed at that. I never usually think about it because if I did, I probably would stay home, curl up in the fetal position and never come out.

Today, I work until noon, go home, eat lunch, take the kids to do a bit of school clothes shopping, take Timm to Dr. Hakes, then football.

Tomorrow, we are going to the football scrimmage in the morning, probably some grocery shopping (not sure I really need to yet), plan a birthday party, maybe make some pickles, and then the pool party at the Parson's in the evening.

Sunday, is always church and laundry and probably can some tomatoes. I am trying to rest more that day, but we will see how it goes. Allie's friend comes home from Kentucky Sunday, so Austin may be over at our house or Allie may go over there. Ya just never know what those two will plan.

See, it sounds like a lot, but it's all in the attitude. I love being home, but this is the time of year that I love to go to football games and support the kids and the band.

The saying that comes to my mind this morning is, "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." I looked this up to see what the meaning of it was and who actually said it. Here is what I found. There are many variations, but they all follow the same theme: A person who doesn't have something particular to occupy himself with doing will be tempted to occupy himself with sin. The phrasing is not found in the Bible, but like many "chimney corner scriptures" it has its roots in a scriptural idea. 1Timothy 5:13 says "And besides they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house, and not only idle but also gossips and busybodies, saying things which they ought not".

I don't want to be any of those things. I want to go about my work humbly, quietly, and without notice. I want to lay up treasures in heaven. I don't want anyone to think I that what I do is something other than for God. So, my mood will remain joyful for what I am doing, going about my business and keeping my eyes on the prize.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


This has been an interesting week in the Fox household. The main thing going on is that Timm went from a football player to the football team manager. Last Friday, the team started hitting. He took a pretty good hit which shook him. He complained of a headache and sore neck all weekend. So we took him to Dr. Hakes, the chiropractor, to see what was going on. Dr. Hakes adjusted him and talked to him. He told Timm not to hit on Monday, and resuming everything on Tuesday. Well, by Tuesday, Timm didn't feel any better and didn't want to practice. So he decided to turn in his equipment. While doing that, the Athletic Director talked with him and suggested maybe he could help out the team and coaches. Timm told him he would have to talk to us about that and last night, Mike and Timm talked with Coach Lawson and though the coach really would like him to play, he agreed to have him help out as manager.

When talking to Timm through all this, he admitted that he was scared of getting hurt more seriously. We have all heard the horror stories and know that even though this possibility is slight, Timm's fear is real and valid. I can not force him to realize that what he fears will not happen. I can help him pray that God will calm him and let him know that no matter what he will be fine. I do not want to call this fear irrational because we all have fears that grip us and won't let us go.

Timm has never been aggressive enough for a lot of sports. Oh, he talks a great talk, but his bark is worse than his bite. He loves the idea of football and wants to be a help to the team. During football camp, he received an award for Most Enthusiastic. The coaches saw him as an encourager. Mike said he got the "cheerleader" award. Well, now that is what he is doing, encouraging, cheering on his fellow teammates, and helping behind the scenes at each practice and game. He can now be known as the Bobby Boucher of Monroe 7th Grade Football Team.

1 Thessalonians 3:2 We sent Timothy, who is our brother and God's fellow worker in spreading the gospel of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you in your faith,

Hebrews 3:13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.

I am proud of Timm for stepping up and making this decision. I am hoping that the coaches will keep him interested and help him see that football is not as dangerous or scary and a little bit of pain won't hurt you. But, I am not even sure of the pain he is in. He is never one to complain too much, so keep Timm in your prayers while we trying and figure out what is going on with him.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Thanks for praying

I ask a lot of you for prayer. I have people from church, acquaintances, and such asking me to pray for a specific person or need. Some of you get back with me and tell me you are praying. I am grateful for all of you who do pray. Pray is one of the easiest things to do. You can quietly go about your day, but your mind can talk to God all the while. I am always praying about someone or some situation. I have an aquaintance right now who's father passed away yesterday. I am not sure of his name, but Brian has been to church with Allie's friend, Austin and his mom. I am not even sure that it was a sudden death or what, but I know that he is hurting and needs our prayers.

It's nice to know that most of you will remember some of what I send you. Your thoughts are filled with everyday life, but for 2 minutes you turn your minds onto a little bit of my brain and what God has called me to say. So pray for me and my family. We can always use your prayers and we know that you need them too. I try and remember to pray for everyone, especially those who I know are going through a rough patch right now.

Psalm 66:20 Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!

Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Philemon 1:4 I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers,

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Worry Not!

Ah, technology. I came into the office today and our computers were down. People were taking the news one of two ways. They were either relaxed and trying to get non-computer work done or they were nervous, trying to figure out how to do their job.

I was more in line with the catch up on a few things that I could do without the computer. I had no where to be and I still had the phone to answer. The question of the day is, what did we do before computers? Computers are convenient and they are very useful, but having a hard copy of everything still makes it reassuring that life will go on. Maybe that's why most of us never get rid of the phonebook or our address book. I still have a calendar I hang on the wall.

When the electric was out, we barely had cell phones, no computers and no tv. This morning, we had no computers, and people went into panic mode. I say, slow down, people! No matter what convenience you have, the only one in real control is God. He will carry you through every situation, no matter what.

25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?

Monday, August 10, 2009

Yesterday, two friends at church sang a song and dedicated it to my Dad. Most of you know that my Dad has just gone through 3 months of radical raditation and chemotherapy. The song message was 'if we didn't go through the valley, how could we know that God would lift us up to the mountain top.' They did a great service to him. He was very touched, and so was I. Dad is feeling better and some of his energy is coming back. He can't do a lot of what he use to do, but that's okay. He should not be doing everything he use to do.

Somtimes our valleys are just little dips. Sometimes they seem to go on forever, with little hills and bumps along the way. Which are you in right now? Remember that God is there for you and will take care of you.

"Be not dismayed whate'er betide.
God will take care of you.
Beneath His wings of love abide.
God will take care of you.

God will take care of you
Through every day o'er all the way.
He will take care of you,
God will take care of you.

Through days of toil when heart doth fail,
God will take care of you;
when dangers fierce your path assail,
God will take care of you.

All you may need he will provide,
God will take care of you;
nothing you ask will be denied,
God will take care of you.

No matter what may be the test,
God will take care of you;
lean, weary one, upon his breast,
God will take care of you.

Words by Civilla D. Martin
Music by W. Stillman Martin

Friday, August 7, 2009

Help! I'm Complex!

Well, 9th grader made through her first 24 hours of band camp. I knew she would. I never had any doubt that once she got there she would be fine. She does say that I am wanted there. It's nice to be wanted. But why me? I am a mom, but I guess, like my Dad, I have a tendency to make things fun for others.

I have my other side too, like meeting someone face to face for the first time. I am not sure what to say, how they expect me to respond, what they think of how I look, or if they really even want to talk to me. I get nervous, especially if neither of us makes that first initial contact. Then I try and get out of the situation. I move away and then spend the rest of the time beating myself up because now I am thinking that the person may think I don't like them, that I was a snob or that I didn't even notice them. Actually, I was just nervous and wasn't sure what to say.

So life is full of complexities that we need to just take by the horns and get on with. Say hi to that new person that you want to make contact with. Go in with an attitude that it doesn't matter what everyone else thinks and just be yourself. Make life fun for everyone around you. You may just find that it really is a lot of fun.

Hebrews 3:6 But Christ is faithful as a son over God's house. And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and the hope of which we boast.

Matthew 14:27 But Jesus immediately said to them: "Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid."

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Know Your Child

Today I dropped my 9th grader off early for band camp. She is scared and tired and not quite sure she is ready for this. Last night she had one of her major mental breakdowns. As some background, the Auxillary girls spent the night before making their tassels and going TP-ing. That's another story.

The 9th grader apparently, being crafty as she is, made her tassels in record time. She was telling me how impressed the senior of the group was and that she now holds the record for how long it takes. I am sure we will be making lots of tassels as the years go by, so she will have to explain that to me later. But the girls stayed up way past her bed time and last night I saw the result of that. She is the type of person who doesn't like the unknown. She wants to know exactly what we are doing, when we are doing it, and and don't give her any of this "You'll love band camp. You will have such a great time!" She didn't care about that at 11 PM at night, with less than 7 hours of sleep. She didn't know what she wants but she was sure she doesn't want to go to band camp. She wants to stay home in the comfort of her bedroom and cry. I love being a mom, don't you?

Anyway, I went to find her schedule to help show her exactly what she was going to be doing when, and give her time to calm down. Dad wanted to help, but his words of encouragement were to say the least, not very encouraging to a 15-year old girl dealing with emotions and sleep depravation. Bless his heart, he tries.

When I get back, I find the 9th grader packing a few more things, and she tells me that when they are seniors, they will do this and this and this. I hugged her and said, "See you are already planning for the future." She smiled and said, "I know." The best part is that she will be with her best friend, and she can make stronger bonds with the other girls and boys.

This morning, I told her best friend, that she had a mental breakdown last night and he had to be extra nice to her this week. "I'm always nice to her," was his response. (I am rolling my eyes at this comment.) He's almost 15, what does he know? This morning I stood around and talked for a few minutes and the 9th grader finally told me I could leave. So I hug her, tell her and the best friend to be good and that I will see the tomorrow evening. Then I turn and walk to my vehicle. I know she is in good hands and I will be out there tomorrow evening, spending the night and probably chaperoning the 9th graders as the prank the seniors and the director. But, that will be for another time.

The point of this story is that, 1)Never let your child go to a major sleepover right before band camp. 2)Know your child's limitations. 3)Patience is really something that you have to learn. 4)Compassion goes a long way in helping your child grow.

Psalm 103:13 As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;

Proverbs 17:6 Children's children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Welcome Them! August 5, 2009

Today our church family should be filled with an underlying excitement. Today, we are taking on something that we have not done. We, for the first time, have an Associate Minister! For our small church, this is exciting!

Sometime today, they should be getting in to town. We have several people going to meet them and help them unpack the U-Haul. We also have people who are preparing their first meal for them. We want to make them feel like they are welcomed and that we want them here. We want to encourage them and make them feel at home. Take Crystal under your wing and show her the church, the family, the different opportunities we have at our church and in our community. Do not think someone else will do that. Do not expect that our minister's wife will do all of that. She will do some of it, but she too works, has responsibilities and family to attend too. This is our church, our family. Each of us need to step up and not wait for someone to ask or someone to tell us what we need to do. If you have an idea, and are not sure if it is good enough or the right direction, run it by an Elder. They will guide you and direct you.

This is how we encourage each other. Pray for the Dawsons. Help them. Get to know them. You may just find that you actually like them!

Hebrews 3:13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness.

Hebrews 10:25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

God is reliable. He does what He says, and He delivers on His promises. How many of us can say that? We make promises in our wedding vows, to our families, to customers and we still let everyone of them down. But through Christ and before, God has never let a promise go undone. There may be a few that has not been fullfilled yet, but you can trust that they will.

We expect reliability in a car, a dog, and maybe in that old refridgerator, but sooner or later, they break down or die. God will never let that happen. His promises are true. His words are reliable for every stage of our life. The Bible is full of God's reliability. He saved the Israelites and called them His people. He helped King David, and his descendents as they reigned. He promised us a Savior and through God's love, Jesus is that person.

Never doubt God's love for you. He made these promises with you in mind. He gave you the choice to accept Christ or spurn him. If you love Jesus and obey God's commands, His love for you will always be there. I promise. John 16:27 says 'No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.'

Jesus tells us that he loves us time and time again. His word is totally pure and reliable. We need to remember that the next time we make a promise we don't intend to keep. Maybe our reliability will increase.

Monday, August 3, 2009

TakeTime to Be Holy - words by William D. Longstaff
  1. Take time to be holy, speak oft with thy Lord;
    Abide in Him always, and feed on His Word.
    Make friends of God’s children, help those who are weak,
    Forgetting in nothing His blessing to seek.
  2. Take time to be holy, the world rushes on;
    Spend much time in secret, with Jesus alone.
    By looking to Jesus, like Him thou shalt be;
    Thy friends in thy conduct His likeness shall see.
  3. Take time to be holy, let Him be thy Guide;
    And run not before Him, whatever betide.
    In joy or in sorrow, still follow the Lord,
    And, looking to Jesus, still trust in His Word.
  4. Take time to be holy, be calm in thy soul,
    Each thought and each motive beneath His control.
    Thus led by His Spirit to fountains of love,
    Thou soon shalt be fitted for service above.
This hymn speaks to me in so many ways. Take time is how each verse begins. Do we really do that? Do we take the time to speak with God? Do we take really take time to be holy? I don't always. Sometimes my mind is elsewhere. Sometimes I can't concentrate on what is being said during Sunday school or during preaching (sorry Marty).

The second verse speaks to me as a busy wife, mother and employee. The world is rushing on and I need to spend time in secret with Jesus, praying, reading my devotion, preparing. But I always wonder, how can my children see me reading and spending time in with God in prayer and devotions if it is done in secret? I actually do realize that it really means do not make a big show of what you are doing. Sometimes though, it turns into that without you meaning it to.

Take time to read these words and evaluate your life as this song tells you. What time are you taking?