Saturday, October 30, 2010

Love, Sweet Love

I pulled my coffee mug that I bought at Refugio in Peru last month down from the cabinet and filled it with delicious Starbucks coffee my husband made for me before he left to go coach his Upward team this morning. I was heading for my home office when I heard my cellphone, that ringtone I get when someone is sending me a text message. It was a friend sending me something she read in her Bible study this morning. It was obviously from whatever Bible study material she is using and I don't know the author but here it is, "Genuine love is a love for others that finds its source in your desire to love God even more." That so reminds me of what the Apostle John wrote in his epistle 1 John. In 5 chapters he used the word love more than 30 times. He wrote things like: don't love the world or things in the world, love God; don't just say you love - DO love; love one another because love is from God; God revealed His love in His Son, Jesus.

I am thinking hard on that this morning because I leave one week from today for India. I readily admit that I am reluctant to go. It will be my 4th time in India and it's a hard place to go. The trip over is near torture, it's always hot and dirty, you have to be careful about every single thing you eat and drink, getting back and readjusting to life in Mansfield is always physically hard on me for some reason. And, it seems like I just got back from overseas and it is senior year, by the way.

However, I do think that my growing (and I hope my status is always growing) relationship with God compels me to go where I do not necessarily want to go. My love of the people of India or my ability to go there is not something that comes from my natural woman. I was listening to David Platt, author of the book Radical, preach on the internet and he said, "Can I believe in the gospel and turn a deaf ear to the unreached and starving in the world?" If I know for sure that I can do something then I must do it, I am compelled to do it.

So, it is my love for God that calls me to love others and to serve others whenever and however I can. But, that love is not something that I thought up or made up myself. It is because God first loved me, He first loved me. His expression of love was to send His Son Jesus so that we might know Him. First we know, then we do - the source, inspiration, and power is Love, sweet Love.

Serving the King,


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Trying to Stay Focused

Do you ever have so many projects going on or deadlines looming that it's hard to stay focused on just one at a time? I'm there, baby. I can't sleep at night because I can't turn my brain off which makes the next day harder because, like I've always said, I need my beauty sleep and it's not my outward beauty I'm talking about! And, with all the excitement with the Texas Rangers in the World Series, well, it's almost too much! Oh, I'm just being dramatic and a bit silly. I am leaving for India in a week and 2 days and so it seems like I have a lot to accomplish before my departure date gets here. I put way more pressure on myself than I should or need to. I think it's just a bit humorous, too, that all those years when I was taking care of my little kids and I dreamed of the day when I would have grown-up things to do that I thought it would be great.  Those days seemed hard at the time - changing diapers and chasing toddlers was not my favorite season of life. If I could freeze time I would keep my kids the age they are now forever. I LOVE the teenage years. Well, the college boy is not a teen but he's at a really great place in life. Yes, teenagers bring challenges at times but life is great. I love every project that I am working on and feel so blessed to be here. Really. God has been over-abundantly good. He has knocked my socks off and stretched me and caused me to rely on Him in new ways.

Well, this is a really random, rambling post and really has no purpose except to provide a second of a break from a full day. I've got a sick kid home and I can hear him watching one of those shows where the person has to sing a song and they are not given all the lyrics. It's cracking me up! So, back to work for me...

Have a fabulicious day!


Monday, October 25, 2010

History and Warning Signs

I really like history. It fascinates me and captures my attention. Sometimes it sidetracks me in my Bible study because I am looking up how whatever I am studying intersects with history and culture of the time period in which it was written. So, right now I am simultaneously reading Flyboys by James Bradley and a biogaphy of Dietrich Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas. Where I am currently reading in each book is in the years leading up to World War II. It's really interesting to read what was going on in 2 different parts of the world and how those events intersected to become something that affected the entire world. 

I think I sat down to write this post about the amazing information that I've recently read in each book about ostracities nations committed against other nations, people committed against people. I mean, horrendous things and things that don't make sense to me. And, in many instances, there seemed to be warning signs that were ignored. There were voices crying out that danger was ahead and many times those voices were ignored. I wonder how such things could happen or how people could be so evil, so uncaring, so lost.

Then, I thought better or it. Would you want to read paragraph after paragraph of quotes from books that were interesting to me? Would you wonder where in the world my thought process was going? Would you even still be reading to this point?

I know in my own life there have been times when I've ignored warning signs or even people trying to warn me of danger ahead. I've totally missed the chance to change my direction before it was too late. Yeah, I've been there. I'm studying the Old Testament book of Judges right now and it's a time in Israel's history when they blew it over and over again. They ignored the law and the warning signs and got in trouble but then cried out to God. He sent them relief and they walked in obedience for a while and then fell back into their old pattern of behavior. Going their own way, doing their own thing, not caring, lost, even evil.

Are there any warning signs you're ignoring? Do you know what's right but simply are not choosing right? I know this is random and I don't know if anyone reading this needs it but ...STOP! (this is your warning sign)

We can learn a lot from our own personal history, those places we failed before. But, we don't have to go there again, we don't. I love it that God's mercies are new every morning. He is our strength and our refuge (check out Psalm 62) for every new day. It's a choice we make on our own - we are making our own history and our own legacy for our families and for those whose lives we impact. What if someone was writing your biography? What would you want that biography to say about you? Are you doing today what you want to be written about you? If not, then get to it.

Serving the King,


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Is it ever ok to tell a lie?

I asked the above question to my Life Group this past Sunday. We had a lesson about sin and I was just using the question to make reference to the moral ambiguity and relativism in our culture. Little did I know that there would be such a discussion on what I thought was a fairly simple question. I have a little saying (well, we have lots of sayings at our house actually) that I use - there's black and white and there is no gray. It has hand motions that go with it so you aren't getting the full effect of the saying here. But, I am, by nature, a rule follower. I see black and white. Gray is not an option for me. Other people in my house, not mentioning any names, see gray. To them, gray is ok. I cannot relate to gray. (Although recently I purchased 2 new gray sweaters. Why would one need 2 gray sweaters? It seems a little overboard for me except one is shortsleeve and one is long which has nothing to do with today's post.)

So, what do you think - is it ever ok to tell a lie? One person commented that it is ok to lie to save a life. One person said it is ok to lie so as not to hurt another's feelings. "Oh, yeah, those shoes look fine with that outfit," and secretly thinking you should call the fashion police. Help a sister out, tell the truth!!

I was reading the story of Samson and Delilah from the 16th chapter of Judges today. Delilah asked Samson the secret to his great strength. The first time she asked, he told her a lie. But, the lie saved his life. Did that make the lie ok?  And, what was it about Samson's relationship with Delilah that was all wrong to begin with that put him in a position where he needed to lie?

Sometimes we get ourselves into messes that are hard to get out of. Where we go and what we do is so important. We must guard our steps and guard our hearts. God wants us to have the life that is abundant (John 10:10) not one filled with lies and deception. His plan is so much greater than that!

Which brings me to the next question, why do we think there's a difference between a little white lie and telling big lie? Or is there a difference?

Just wondering...

Serving the King,


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Fall is Finally Here in North Texas

I'm just taking a short little break this afternoon and sitting on the couch watching a little Texas Rangers baseball. (yes, Kathy, go Rangers! and, no, she didn't get homecoming queen - thanks for asking!) We are up 6-0 in the 7th inning with 1 out. Yes, those Rangers won yesterday and maybe it's a little too early to hope for a sweep...

I've been working all day on the women's conference in India. I always feel a little stressed about it. The culture and lifestyle varies so much from what we experience here at home. Yet, God's Word is still truth and is timeless and fits into any culture. (2 outs and Jacob wants to try some homemade broccoli soup I made for his snack today!)

The weather is pretty close to perfect right now. The temps are really nice. (3 outs, 8th inning and Jacob said the soup is actually really good) I sorted my clothes the other day and pulled out my sweaters and put my tank tops and summer clothes in the top of my closet. It's fun to do that because it seems like I have all new clothes - not really new, I just haven't seen them in a few months. Of course, I didn't put up all the hot weather clothes because it will still be stinking hot in India in November!

Well, break is over. I know, already, right? (bottom of the 8th, 2 outs - go Rangers!!)

Serving the King,


(end of 8th, no score change)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Taking a Breath

I arrived home late, late Monday night (after plane trouble & delay in Miami) and hit the ground running Tuesday morning. It's almost 4 pm on Saturday and I feel like it's the first time I have taken it easy since arriving home. I'm not really complaining, that's what mommas do. I finally finished my LifeWay writing assignment and emailed it off to my editor. Yes, yes, I procrastinated and still had work to do after I got home from Peru. I often say that late is the story of my life. It's done, though. Well, except the part that is due November 1st. Don't worry, I will safely have it done by October 31st!

It's homecoming weekend for our high school. I received an email while in Lima telling me that Jessica would be in the queen's court and a nominee for homecoming queen. It was fun for Johnny to walk her out on the field last night at the game. Tonight is the homecoming celebration (what the private school calls a dance). Since Jessica is President of the Student Council we had some decorations to get together today and I made brownies. Then there's Jacob. He didn't come home last night but stayed at a friend's house. He called a little bit ago and asked me to bring him clothes for the party. Picking out a shirt for Jacob over the phone proved to be a frustrating task. I finally got off the phone with him and asked Jessica what he should wear. She picked a few things and Johnny has gone to let him see which one he wants to wear. I got his drivers' ed packet in the mail the other day...needless to say, I'm ready for him to be driving. Then he can take care of picking his own shirt!

Well, I think I'll go watch some college football. I missed it the last 2 weekends. My Baylor Bears killed Kansas today and right now OU is ahead in the big Red River rivalry.

I'm just glad to say, I'm home, sweet home!

Serving the King,