Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Christmas Picture 2014

Our crazy Christmas picture is getting increasingly more difficult.  This year we had a weekend trip planned for Kansas City in mid-December and I told my family that we had to get this picture taken so we could get it in the mail in time.  We had tickets for a Kansas City Chiefs game and decided to make a weekend out of it.  We also went to church with one of my favorite people, Cat :)  It was so good to see her. 

We also did a lot of shopping, and then it hit me...the old navy family! We will take our picture with them for our Christmas card.  I asked one of the store employees if she would take our picture, she said sure and thought it was a fun idea.  I also asked her if we could get up on the platform/table thing but she said no.  She snapped a picture of us with Cameron's phone and whew, the task was complete.  We really gotta get started sooner...

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Monday, November 17, 2014

The Source of Gratitude

"The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love." Psalm 145:8

The Lord extends grace, He waits for us patiently, He loves us regardless of how long it takes us to see our need for Him.  Lean on Him, He can handle our issues.  Let Him be God.

Lord, please help my son, open his eyes to Your truth and love.  Help me give him over to You each day.  Give me the right words to say to him.  I love you, Jesus.  Thank you for Your faithfulness, Your promises, and Your steadfast love.  Amen.

"Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might." Daniel 2:20

God owns wisdom, it belongs to Him.  God is strength.  Trust God, He has everything under control.  He is strong, I can rely on Him.  He can make me wise and strong when I depend on Him.

Lord, thank You for this truth today.  Christian is breaking my heart, but I know You are pursuing him and I know You are in control and maybe he needs to go through some things to see clearly the plans You have for him.  I love You, Jesus for all that You are and for loving me when I am so unlovable.  Praise Your Holy name!  Amen.

"For who is God, but the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God?" Psalm 18:31

God is the best of everything; He is the most powerful, omnipotent, magnificent Lord, creator, King.  God is our refuge, our strength; why worry about anything, we have the Lord on our side, He takes care of us.

Lord, help me give everything over to You always, constantly.  You are above everything else and I can draw upon Your strength and rely on Your shelter.  Thank You for Your Truth and protection.  I love You.  Amen.

"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness." Lamentations 3:22-23

The Lord's love is constant and strong, He continually shows us mercy.  Every day is a new day, He is always faithful.  Read the Word! It brings comfort and strength!  Thank You for the Word and Your promises, Lord!

Lord Jesus, thank You for this passage today.  I need to remember these words, Your word, and meditate on it daily.  I am so thankful and grateful for this reminder of Your continual love for me and new mercies.  I love You, Jesus.  Amen.

"But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."  Romans 5:8

Regardless of our sin, God loves us more than we can imagine and died for us.  Cling to the cross, remember the Gospel, live the Gospel.  God loves us so much.

Lord, thank You for all the reminders of Your great love for me.  You amaze me every day, I am so unworthy.  Thank You for Your continual love and peace.  I love You, Jesus.

I am continually in awe of my Lord.  I am a wretched, dirty sinner and yet, Jesus is constantly pouring out His love and forgiveness on me.  He has been reminding me that He is faithful, trustworthy, and oh so gracious.  I am so thankful for His presence and overwhelming peace and comfort.  I am not worthy of His love and mercy, yet He gives it to me every day.  What an amazing King we serve, my ever present help in trouble.


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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Family's Family

"They" always say you can choose your friends but can't choose your family.  I love my family...there are some weird ones, of course, but still, they accept me the way I am.

My Grandpa, John Hardin

My Mom, Marilee, and Sister, Candy

My niece, Quen

My Aunt Barbara

My Cousin Misty

My niece, Amber

My Cousin Charity

My Aunt Pat and Uncle Lee

My Cousin Jennifer

My Uncle Rich (Dale) and Aunt Marsha

My Awesome Family

My Aunt Barbara and Uncle Chester

My Aunt Mary and Uncle Eric

Siblings: Uncle Rich, Aunt Barbara, Mom - Marilee, and Uncle Eric


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My Grandma ~ Cora "Lucille" Hardin

My Grandma went home to Jesus last week, November 5th, 2014.

My grandma went home on Wednesday morning, she was one of the most amazing women I've ever known, she was a wonderful example of a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, woman. She was always kind, never spoiled us grandkids, and always had things to teach us. Some of my fondest memories are popcorn and apples, crazy 8s, fresh baked cookies (but not right before dinner, if you were starving you got a piece of bread and butter), walks to the mailbox, holding hands dancing around a small Christmas tree on the way to pick blackberries, jello with fruit or marshmallows, fancy chiffon cakes, and records on the console record player, "You can't roller skate in a buffalo herd" is my favorite. She loved jigsaw puzzles and I loved doing them with her.  She made me eat spinach once and when I started gagging she said I never had to eat it again.  She was a faithful follower of Christ and lived it better than anyone. She taught me my very first song on the piano. I am named after her "Cora" is our first name, she didn't go by it and neither do I but I am proud to share it with her. She is with Jesus and I'm so grateful God made her my grandma.

I sang at her funeral, she had always wanted me to sing "Serenaded By Angels", a southern gospel song about angels serenading you to the throne of the King.  My cousin, Jennifer and I sang Sweet Beulah Land and Shall We Gather at the River.  Grandpa so wanted me to sing "Whispering Hope" but I couldn't get it together in time.  Whispering Hope is an old hymn and is hard to find nowadays, I always remembered it in a big cream and brown colored songbook that sat on my grandparents piano and it was the only song I could really play out of that book.

As I was sitting there listening to my grandpa's pastor give the message at grandma's service I just kept thinking...tell them about Jesus, tell this family, my family, about Jesus.  And he did, he said if we wanted to see grandma again we had to be born again, had to have a relationship with Jesus Christ.  I was thankful for him and inside I wanted to stand up and preach along with him.  I told James later that at my funeral they better preach the gospel hard and give an altar call.  It's the only thing that matters....Jesus.  I hope they got it, I hope my family, extended and all, really heard Jesus preached that day.

I loved seeing all these family members I hadn't seen in so long, it was a fantastic weekend.  My grandma...a wonderful woman, full of grace and love...a life worth celebrating.


I found this sweet picture of my grandma and Cameron.  Christmas at my Aunt Barbara's house, I believe December 2004.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

I'm going to jail...

I went to jail last Sunday night to do ministry with a lady, Charlotte, from my church.  She goes a couple times a month to the local jail and teaches them the Word.  I told the Recovery Prison Ministry leader, Arlene, that I would go; she set me up with training and got me going.  She said I could just observe the first time.  On Sunday morning she told me she'd like me to sing, I said 'of course'.  I'm not gonna lie, I was a little nervous...this is way outside my comfort zone and I'm not good with women relationships as it is.  But it was a great experience and I will go back.

We did three sessions with three different pods (groups of ladies), 34 total ladies.  The first group came in and I immediately recognized a young lady, she is probably still a teenager, I remembered her from a couple of youth events held at my church.  I talked to her briefly afterward (we don't get much one-on-one time) and told her I recognized her, she said the same of me and said she would come to church when she got out.  I don't know if she will but I'd like to see her and talk to her again, hopefully on the outside.  I saw women of all ages, the older ladies kind of surprised me, they seemed less engaged than the younger girls...maybe that's because this has been a cycle in their lives for a long time, I'm really not sure.  We don't ask what they're in for, we just show and tell them that Jesus loves them and has a plan for their lives.  Some of them really want change in their lives, one girl asked how to stop going down the same road again once she gets out, she said she will do good for a while and then fall right back into her addiction.  Only Jesus.  Only Jesus can help her get out of this pit of addiction and sin.  That's the same for all of us, He is our only hope, our Redeemer, our Savior.

Some asked questions...of various kinds to which Charlotte would turn to me and say "Christy? You wanna take that?"  It cracked me up and I would try to answer them the best I could, they had questions about mercy and grace, and questions about where we are in Revelation or where would we be if we were on the ark?  Still not sure what she was talking about but it didn't matter.  What mattered was that we showed them we cared about them, we told them about Christ, and how they can have hope.  What a blessing and a privilege to share the Word of God and hope of Jesus with these women.

Recovery Prison Ministries - Dedicated to setting the captives free.


Saturday, October 11, 2014

There Was a Snake in the Church?

It was late afternoon, everyone else had gone home.  I had just finished adding some new announcement slides in the sound booth for Sunday morning's service and there he the bottom of the stairs...a snake.  He had his head reared and was staring right at me with those beady little eyes. 

I wasn't sure what kind of snake he was so I snapped a picture with my phone and retreated to the stairs on the other side of the booth and went to my office to do some research.  I googled snakes in Missouri and found that he was an innocent Midland Brown Snake, harmless to humans but not so much for slugs, etc.  I went to the kitchen and found a small bucket (a container slightly larger than a butter tub and put it over the top of him.  I texted the picture to the worship pastor since we would be having practice in a couple of hours.  He wasn't to enthused...his exact words were "please get rid of it".

This amused me a little, a couple of years ago there was a teeny tiny snake in the hall heading towards the furnace closet and our senior pastor stepped on him and called for me to come get this snake!  I wasn't too keen on picking up a snake but thought I was going to be tough and get rid of the big mean snake for the sake of my pastor.  The snake looked more like a big night crawler but I took him outside and let him go.

Now here was a similar situation except that I had discovered the snake and knew I could take care of him if I needed to.  I left and ran some errands and returned just before the worship pastor arrived.  The drummer had come early to practice, I told him about the coldhearted beast and he went to check him out.  Much to my surprise, he didn't want to have anything to do with him either.  I just haven't experienced this much since my husband will pick up almost anything and put almost any creature in his mouth...he is the opposite extreme which is an entirely different problem.

Needless to say, the worship pastor did not appreciate the fact that the snake was still around.  I got a couple pieces of paper and the drummer and I worked together to slide the container onto the paper so I could pick him up (I'm still not thrilled about touching them).  We flipped him over and he was now securely? the tub.  And I just couldn't help myself...I chased the worship pastor with the tub o' snake.  He ran and called me a jerk which made me laugh even harder.  I relented, took him outside to the grass and let him go.

I proceeded to tell another vocalist about the incident and the only thing he said (repeatedly) was "there was a snake in the church?"

Really...this snake was only 9 or 10 inches long at most.  He was tiny.  At the end of the night I did tell the worship pastor that I put it in his car but then said I was kidding...he wasn't so sure and I imagine that was a difficult drive home for him.


Friday, October 10, 2014

My Baby is 18...and a Superhero

Cameron turned 18 years old on Monday, October 6.  This kid, he is really a remarkable young man.  I am so proud of who he is and who he is becoming, I know God has some amazing things in store for him, he has a beautiful, kind, compassionate heart.  And...he's a superhero.  He loves Superman...I don't know if it's because he wants to be superman, wants to fly?  Wednesday for spirit week he is was superman/clark kent all rolled into one. 

I love that he is so fun and not too cool to have fun.  He doesn't want to party like most kids his age, he loves working with kids with special needs, and he is serious about his purity.  He gives me hugs and tells me he loves me...and will even say it first.  He sings loud and proud in the shower, this morning it was his all state choir tryout piece.  He loves the song "Aint No Mountain High Enough" and other oldies which crack me up.  He is a special person.  Don't get me wrong, he isn't perfect but he is a gift from God and I am so thankful and proud to be his mama.  Today as he was leaving the house for school I asked him to let me take his picture (he told me he was taking all his pics all week without smiling).
He opened the door and it was pouring down rain.  He asked if we had an umbrella and I said no :(  He said "it's ok...I'll use my cape!"  He flung it over his head and away he went.
He is a standout in a crowd (LHS choir singing the National Anthem)


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Paralyzing Fear

Fear of making the wrong decision shouldn't strip the faith right out of our faith.  The only way our faith will ever strengthen is for us to use it. 

Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths."

1. Trusting in God by placing my desire under His authority.
2. Analyzing the decision.
3. Making the decision.
4. Owning the decision.
5. Trusting God to work good even from the not-so-good parts.

We steer where we stare.

When I stare at failure, I'll fear it.  I'll convince myself it's the worst thing that could happen.  And I'll stay stuck.  But when I stare at all the possible ways God can use this whether I succeed or fail, I'll face my decision.  I'll convince myself that it's better to step out and find out then to stay stuck.

Fear can paralyze us and keep us from doing what God is calling us to do.  For a long time I was a 'go with the flow' girl, never taking a risk, just falling in line, which isn't always a bad thing but last year I took a risk and made a decision to step out in faith and trust God to lead me on a fantastic journey.  God had a lot in store for me that I would have missed had I not let go of that fear.  God opened so many doors following that decision that I was simply in awe and so grateful.  If I hadn't stepped out boldly and grabbed that decision/opportunity by the horns, I would have missed out on God's best yes for me.

It's so important to take our decisions to the Lord and trusting Him with them.  He always confirms what we should or shouldn't do in His Word.  Stop overanalyzing, stop being fearful of what could or couldn't happen.  God is faithful and in control, that should give us comfort and boldness!


(italics The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst)

Friday, October 3, 2014

Chase Down That Decision

Proverbs 27:12 "The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it."

Today's choices become tomorrow's consequences.


Our decisions aren't just isolated choices.  Our decisions point our lives in the directions we're about to head.  Show me a decision and I'll show you a direction.

We, you and me, often are ruled by our emotions or feelings.  We don't consider the cost of making even the smallest choice or decision.  Sometimes I will decide to "help" with something and later regret that choice because it either takes me away from my family or takes me away from something else I should be doing.  But other times we make emotion decisions.  I count myself pretty level-headed and calm in tough situations and am not one to do something rash, but there are times when my emotions are running unusually high and I will say or do something I might not normally do.  It is so important to not be ruled by your emotions.  It's really a selfish way to live.  It means we are only caring or looking at how something affects us.  The closer I am to Christ and grow in Him, the better at controlling my emotions I become.

Chasing down our decisions will help us stop and think about the consequences those decisions will have on us and the ones we love.

Check out Lysa's "Chasing Down That Decision" tool at


(in italics The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst)

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Sarcastic or Rude?

Tell me about do you perceive me?  I really want to know because I'm not quite sure myself.  I wrote that post last week about 10 things you may not know about me but is that how I see myself or how others see me?  I really have no idea.  It's kind of troubling or maybe I'm just trying to ignore the fact that I may not be as lovely as I ought to be.  I'm not looking for accolades here...I'm just very curious.  This curiosity just hit me a little more fuller in the face, I cooked a meal for 100 college students and took a few ladies with me to serve it to them (this was really outside of my comfort range but alas...) anyway, I was in a somewhat happy-go-lucky mood and the Baptist Student Union leader said, "I don't know how to take you".  Ok....a while back I was helping with a wedding reception and another woman helping said, "I don't know if you're being sarcastic or rude".  Whoa, that one hurt!  I wasn't offended by her, I was just really convicted.  Did I change my ways?  Probably, God does that to His children, molds them to be more like Him to which I'm very thankful.  Maybe I have a split personality, sometimes I'm quiet...aren't I?


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

God's Word, Ways, and Wonder

Right away I found myself in the first few paragraphs of this chapter.  A conflict in my innermost being regarding a decision that had to be made, saying yes meant a lot of emotional stress or added time doing such and such or more time away from my family but saying no to me made me feel like a failure.  I'm a Christian so I should just say yes to almost any request, right?  There have been so many times when I felt I should say no but felt I was expected to say yes.

28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? 29 Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ Luke 14:28-30

Things to consider when making a decision.

Whenever there is a conflict seek clarity from God.

28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

God's Word addresses my approach - physically, financially, spiritually, emotionally.  The Word of God instructs the approach we should have to life.  A good approach to something requires enough resources to handle the demands of the activity.  While the task itself may be honoring to God, my approach in one or more of these areas may not be.

17 And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17

Whatever I do.
In word or deed.
My approach must honor Jesus.

If someone or something demands my attention and I don't have the physical, financial, spiritual, or emotional space to handle them, my actions will betray my intentions.  A no answer doesn't make you a bad person.  It makes you the wrong person for that assignment.

Love - "God is love." 1 John 4:8

1 Corinthians 13:1-3 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned,[a] but have not love, I gain nothing.

If we say yes to anything without love, then it is not godly.

The ways of God insist on an attitude of love

Whatever attitude we bring into a situation will be multiplied.  Think about that, I can recall times where I have been cranky about "being made to" do something I really didn't want to or feel that I should be doing it and my attitude of crankiness or bitterness became worse as the assignment or task drew near.

My attitude of love must trump my activity.  We aren't the master provider, He is.

Isaiah 33:16-17 16 he will dwell on the heights; his place of defense will be the fortresses of rocks; his bread will be given him; his water will be sure. 17 Your eyes will behold the king in his beauty; they will see a land that stretches afar."

The Word of God addresses my approach.  The ways of God address my attitude.  The wonder of God provides my assurance.

Ultimately, God is in control.  He knows far better than we do what we should be doing, He knows our best yes.

Discovering our best yes isn't about saying no to anything that feels uncomfortable.  Or stretching.  Or even beyond our abilities to resource.  This isn't about an excuse not to step out in faith.  There is a time and a place to say yes.  It's about learning to say yes to those things that are truly meant to be our assignments.

Part of my job is to ask people to do things, to get volunteers for this and that but sometimes I feel like (or tell myself) that it would be easier to just do it myself which sometimes turns into me sitting in a puddle of tears, overwhelmed, exhausted, and alone.  My hope is that I will listen to God's voice and have discernment about my assignments, that everything I say yes to will be out of love and obedience to my King.  That I will bring Him honor and glory with anything yes or any no and that I will have an attitude of love.

He is worthy and deserves my best yes.

(in italics - The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Decision Making

Find that courageous yes.  Fight for that confident no.

Decision making - Philippians 1:9-10 "And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,  so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ"

Knowledge, Insight, and Discernment.  Ask these questions when faced with a difficult decision.

1 - Have you been reading and praying through God's Word lately?
2 - Have you been applying God's Word in your life lately?
3 - Have you sought godly counsel and insights from wise people who know specifics about your situation?


Wisdom makes decisions today that will still be good tomorrow.

Don't despise the daily stuff, the mundane every day things.  Wisdom is a lifestyle.

2 Samuel 20:16-22 16 Then a wise woman called from the city, “Listen! Listen! Tell Joab, ‘Come here, that I may speak to you.’” 17 And he came near her, and the woman said, “Are you Joab?” He answered, “I am.” Then she said to him, “Listen to the words of your servant.” And he answered, “I am listening.” 18 Then she said, “They used to say in former times, ‘Let them but ask counsel at Abel,’ and so they settled a matter. 19 I am one of those who are peaceable and faithful in Israel. You seek to destroy a city that is a mother in Israel. Why will you swallow up the heritage of the Lord?” 20 Joab answered, “Far be it from me, far be it, that I should swallow up or destroy! 21 That is not true. But a man of the hill country of Ephraim, called Sheba the son of Bichri, has lifted up his hand against King David. Give up him alone, and I will withdraw from the city.” And the woman said to Joab, “Behold, his head shall be thrown to you over the wall.” 22 Then the woman went to all the people in her wisdom.

She was a wise woman so they listened to her, she had a lifestyle of wisdom and it spoke loudly to those around her.

Fear the Lord

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever." Psalm 111:10

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight." Proverbs 9:10

Fearing God means looking for the hand of God in everything.


(in italics - The Best Yes by Lysa Terkheurst)

Friday, September 26, 2014

Seek Instruction Before Direction

It was as if God were whispering "Remember - pay attention - see what I want you to see."

Seek instruction before direction.

If we want His direction for our decisions, the great cravings of our souls must not only be the big moments of assignment.  They must also be the seemingly small instructions in the most ordinary of moments when God points His Spirit finger saying, go there.

How many times have I "self-talked" my way out of doing something god was prodding me to do?  What a sinful creature I am.  Lord, help me listen and help me be obedient!

Not every opportunity was meant to be my assignment.

Other people's requests dictate the decisions we make.  We become slaves to others' demands when we let our time become dictated by requests.  We will live reactive lives instead of proactive.

The decisions we make dictate the schedules we keep.  The schedules we keep determine the lives we live.  The lives we live determine how we spend our souls.  So, this isn't just about finding time.  This is about honoring God with the time we have.

Schedule time to work on our next big thing, our dream, what God has truly called us to.  Our Soul Thing!

Do a personal assessment of your time.  Find those precious few hours in your week to work on your soul thing!  How we spend our soul matters.


(in italics - The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

10 Things You Might Not Know About Me....or want to

1.  I cannot lie.  Ok, I'm not saying I haven't lied but it is really hard for me to lie intentionally...even if the truth might hurt your feelings, I just can't help it, I may tell you the truth and it may actually hurt.

2.  I'm not good at telling stories.  I try, and sometimes they kind of make sense but I need to leave that to someone who can make them sound better than they really are.

3.  I say random things.  This happens in two ways, either I'm thinking about something in my head and I say something outloud, it could be during a different conversation (usually with my hubby) but it doesn't make any sense to him.  And other times, I will be talking about something and insert something that isn't even relevant and then I wonder...did they think I meant something other than I intended?

4.  I say things that don't make sense.  See number 3.

5.  I enjoy cleaning.  Weird I know but I can't sit still at home for very long, if something has to be done I just gotta do it before I can feel like I can relax.

6.  I can flare my nostrils.  Nuff said.

7.  I think I'm funny.  Really, I do...even if I'm not, I think I'm a riot just try telling me I'm not...I won't believe you.

8.  I can be really serious.  Really... Seriously...  I can... It's usually around new people in a new environment, it takes me a while to warm up to some people.  I don't even know why.  Do you think I might be shy?  Hmmm...maybe.

9.  I'm kind of a loner.  I like being by myself (not all the time) but a lot of the time.  I'd rather go shopping by myself which some may think is weird but I never feel like I can really look at the stuff I want to or buy the stuff I want to if I'm with someone else.  I may buy a couple things but most of my good shopping is done by myself, much to James' dismay.

10.  I count things.  This may be the strangest one yet, but I do.  I count things over and over, I have a friend that reads things multiple times but I count things.  There might be 23 people in the room and I will count them...multiple times, maybe it's usually know what? It is usually people!  Wait....go back to number 4.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014


My family has been going through some changes and it is quite an adjustment.  This summer the cabinet industry was pretty slow, really slow, we didn't have any income other than mine for two months.  We got behind and just tried to survive til things picked up, God is so faithful and I have always trusted Him to provide so I really wasn't too worried, I'm really not much of a worrier at all, James on the other hand...  James decided to look for another job and God sat one right down in his lap, it was really incredible.  As soon as he was hired, he sold two is this going to work?  James' sweet dad, James' dad works with him quite a bit, he doesn't want to sit around at home all day and he told James he would work at the shop while James went to work in Sedalia.  And so the whirlwind began.  James working 5 days a week and coming home in the evenings and Saturdays working in the cabinet shop.

I work at my church which is a 35 minute drive, James has the cabinet shop (at our home) but James' new job is in Sedalia, the same town I work in... a mediocre jaunt.  Of course, Cameron goes to Lincoln High School which is only a few minutes away from our home.  Everyone has their own vehicle, which makes our driveway look like a used car lot when everyone is home, but is good because we can all go where we need to be.  Our biggest issue is James' truck is a monster fuel sucker and it would cost a small fortune to drive that thing to Sedalia every day so we came up with a system to save on gas.  The catch is that on multiple days of the week I am getting up at 4:30 a.m. and arriving at work by 6:00 a.m., it's not every day but even two days in a row wears me out.  James works from 6:30 to 3:00 p.m. and I work from 8:30 to 5:00...hence the sleep deprived me; I go to work early, he stays around town late.  Some days I start working right away and other times I write blog posts or have extra Bible Study time, which really is nice...but I'm oh so tired.  Pray for me, I know this is a small sacrifice and we are fortunate to have extra income.  God is so good to us, I am constantly in awe of His love and care for lil ol me.


Monday, September 22, 2014

The Rush

Wisdom ~

"When we have a reverential attitude and look for the hand of God in everything, we start seeing things from the perspective of wisdom. This becomes our focus." - tby (The Best Yes)

1 Corinthians 1:24 "but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God."

Colossians 2:3 "in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge."

"The rush makes us rebellious" - tby

"Don't miss your assignment." - tby

"Long for unbroken companionship with God." - tby

"The one who obeys God's instruction for today will develop a keen awareness of His direction for tomorrow." - tby

Isaiah 30:21 "And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, "This is the way, walk in it," when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left."

~ My rushing (busyness) causes me to miss my "Best Yes" moments or opportunities.  "Be Still" whispers to me often, it's God trying to get my attention, to stop and listen; it's hard to hear His voice above my own and the whirlwind of rushing.  The rush makes us rebellious; disobedient to God's leading and prompting.  Let's stop, be still, and listen for His "Best Yes" today.


The Best Yes

My online Bible Study "The Best Yes" has just begun, yesterday, as a matter of fact!  It is already challenging me, this is the stuff I love, conviction, change, new found knowledge of who God is, the list goes on and on.

A few insights...

"We must not confuse the command to love with the disease to please." - tby (the Best Yes)

"What is my best yes?  The Best Yes is you playing your part.  If you know it and believe it, you'll live it." - tby

~ I feel like I've searched this out for a long time and have actually made some headway on this journey for this particular issue.  I know I'm supposed to, am called to, music ministry and I'm being used in this way already.  I have tried to weed out the things I'm not "called" to and have had to use the word "no", much to the surprise of some.  This is only the beginning.  I did a study last year, maybe 2 years ago about surrendering.  In many ways this goes along with that "anything", the titles seem completely opposite of one another but saying you'll do "anything" - surrendering yourself to God means you are opening yourself to God's "Best Yes" for you.  I don't believe that His will and plan for your life is to say "yes" to anything that comes along.  That kind of thinking keeps us busy and distracted for what God's purpose is for us.

Start chasing your "Best Yes".


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Church Secretary

Yesterday, someone introduced me and said "this is our church secretary", it happens quite frequently, and almost every time, I cringe.  I don't blame anyone who does this, it's perfectly natural, it's my problem.  I don't know why but somehow I feel it's derogatory, maybe it's because of the pay or the difficulties of the job, or because I've felt "less than", or maybe because people run the other way or don't make direct eye contact when they see me approaching them because they just know I'm going to ask them to serve somewhere.
But I don't want to be defined as the church secretary.  Now, don't get me wrong, I really love my job...most days ;)  I love serving my Pastors and my church family...all of them.  I am not just a church secretary.  I am a wife, mother, musician, a friend, a missionary, and most importantly a child of the King.  I need to remind myself that Jesus being mine and me His, is the best definition of who I am and that's all that matters. 


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Fantasy Football is NO Fantasy

I admit it...I'm addicted to Fantasy Football.  Well, not as addicted as my oldest son but I do really love it.

I really used to think it was quite silly or annoying but Christian started a family league "The Hoagland Cup" a couple years ago and I've been hooked ever since.  This is year 3 and I plan to win it all this year, I came so close last season but Christian's stinkin' kicker scored an unbelievable amount of points to overthrow me.

I participate in mock drafts before the season begins.  Christian schedules a Fantasy Football Draft night and I wait in anticipation.  The order is random and this time I got to choose my first player last, I knew who I wanted to pick first but was afraid one of my offspring was going to pick him.  I threatened them with something but Cameron still picked my first choice.

I talk to my players.  I know they can't hear me but I talk to them anyway, I threaten to bench them, I cheer for them, urge them to run faster!  I've always like football but this, this is something else.  I played in 3 leagues last year...too many, I would sometimes be playing against a player I had on another team and I just didn't like that.  I am playing in 2, our family league and a friend's league, my friend, one other person I know and a bunch of his friends from college.  Yes, I'm the only girl but that makes it all the sweeter when I kick their butts and I do kick their butts.

I get to name my teams anything I want, my Hoagland Cup team is named "Mama's Monkeymen", don't ask me why...I don't have any answer but for some reason I like to name them with two words that start with the same letter.  My other team is "Porky Passers"...I know, I name.

James laughs at me, I'm not sure if he thinks it's cute when I talk football or thinks I'm completely out of my mind.  Maybe a little bit of both...



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