Random question…Bizarre answer

There are things that we don’t do as adults because of childhood experiences. Maybe there are things that you do a­­­s an adult because of a “deprived” childhood. I’m not getting spiritual or anything here. I mean did your mom not give you sugar and so you have your kids chugging kool-aid…that sort of thing.

Yes, I am looking at you Mom…I used to tell my teachers I was allergic to sugar and would deny myself smarties…I don’t need counseling! I don’t give my kids kool-aid and I don’t buy white bread. Congratulations Mom, it worked!

So today, I choose to put aside every busy thought in my head. I capture them on Evernote. There certainly are a lot more important things happening in the world. They are blog posts for another day. Allow this to be my moment to laugh at myself and reveal to you a little something about me. Something you never cared to know but I hope you find amusing.

I won’t buy a white car…don’t like them.

I said it. Here is why…

–          WHITE Ford Pinto (like the bean…and we were a family of 5)

–          WHITE Ford Tempo

–          WHITE…whatever it was my Mom drove

–          WHITE whatever it is my Dad drove

–          The WHITE Tempo that my Dad brought BACK TO LIFE (imagine FURIOUS teenager who refused to get in the car. Probably do need counseling for that one).

All of these cars were evil! Ask my sisters…we share the same memories and disdain.

Yes, there were many a Sunday when we prayed those wretched cars to church…we made it every Sunday. I suppose you can say I learned the power of prayer thanks to those white cars (there’s your silver lining). There was the one you had to drive around the tree in the front yard to make sure it was really in gear. The A/C didn’t work in any of them. Every white car had a story and it usually involved us three girls all sweaty by the time we got where we are going.

I also remember us volunteering at Feed the Hungry, driving home with the heat on so the car didn’t overheat. I can really brag on my mom here…

Parents – if you are worried about something like this scarring your child for life. I assure you, they will get over it, laugh and blog about it later 🙂

Is there something that you do/don’t do as a result of your childhood?

 

 

 

 

The tweet heard ’round my head

This past week my husband tweeted something that went like this.

Kids are watching Cinderella and I ask the kids “the step mother is mean huh?”the boy responds.”nah she’s just being a mom” I laughed hard.

My husband thought it was hilarious. Surely, if you read it, you did too.

I didn’t find it so humorous. Sure, I laughed for about a second before the reality settled in…OUCH!

The last thing I want my kids to refer to me as is a Disney villain.

I say that my children grow me daily. They stretch me…and this was like a good workout that leaves you really sore the next day.

Cephas is in a new phase. Poop jokes are funny, name calling is a tendency and the creativity abounds. This is the same kid who told a friend “you know what I’m gonna do for you tomorrow? I’m gonna punch you in the face and throw you in the trash can”. He also walked into church on Sunday and greeted his teacher by saying “hey chicken head”. This is the week after I was told that he drew a penis on a stick figure.

Sigh. Some days you have to laugh behind closed doors…

I remember when I was pregnant with Sophia. I confessed to my Mom “I’m scared I’m gonna mess her up”. My Mom in all her motherly wisdom told me “you won’t and if you do (thanks for that) it will just make her stronger.

I was the parent in the airport with my child wearing a monkey harness. I’m not looking for a debate…the Atlanta airport with my 2 ½ yr old (while I wore Sophia in an infant carrier) who ran EVERYWHERE and often away from me. He would have somehow ended up on a slow boat to China. If you knew Cephas from age 2-4, you know that running is his forte! It still is but he slows down when I tell him to.

Oh sweet love and discipline…

Jeanne Mayo said something in her son’s book…a book about how he was raised. She didn’t read the whole thing before it went to print. She said “live your life in such a fashion that if one of your children should decide to write a book about your family, you could enthusiastically say “Go for it! And give me the first signed copy when it comes out”.

God help us! What a perspective and standard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friends

So this past weekend I got to celebrate my 29th birthday. I’ve reached my last year in my 20’s. It doesn’t seem strange…which seems strange. Ready to live it up…plant a church 🙂

I also got to celebrate my dear friend Addy’s graduation from The University of Texas at Austin. The graduation is really the point of my post today…ok, maybe not the graduation but more about the friend and some friends that I can’t begin to express my gratitude for.

Was I thrilled to tears? You bet! There was a reason for this.

My friend has worked so hard. She has sacrificed time, energy, money, comfort, brain function and a social life, not only in the name of education but in the name of pursuit. There is a vision in her that she cannot escape…she pursues it by first pursuing the education she needs to serve the families and communities that God has called her to serve (how blessed they will be). She starts her master’s program in 12 days. Saturday we all got to celebrate this accomplishment.

I am so blessed with some incredible friendships in my life. I read these books about these people who despite what may make sense, follow the call of God into whatever and wherever He calls them. They sacrifice; boldly walk into the unknown, knowing that the purpose far outweighs the risk. I am inspired by what I read, I am challenged and compelled to do likewise.

Then, I look around me and see…I am surrounded by these people.

You may not know their names, someday you may. They are all over the country in cities large and small (some even on an island in Alaska). Some have joined us as we prepare to launch Revive Church. Some are in other countries…regardless of location I am amazed that the people God has put in my life. I am grateful for those I get to call friend. I am grateful for their pursuit.

 

Here are a few pictures from this weekend…

 

 

First Things First

I spent nine amazing years in youth ministry. I know that there are many out there who have been blessed (and exhausted…haha) far longer than I but I bet when it comes to largeness of heart…we would all argue whose has grown the most because of it. It is graduation season again. This year, I couldn’t make it to Tonkawa or San Angelo for graduations. I can’t make it to see my cousin Caleb graduate, (that reality still seems crazy) and most of our students from the Austin area are now in college. This is a reminiscent time of year.

I have learned much from youth pastors we have served under. We grew through relationships, friendships and challenges. I cherish those years and those friendships. I cherish the students we have been able to see grow up. Once again, pieces of my heart.

I’ll never forget a piece of wisdom I was given in the middle of those years. It was simple but it reminded me of what had to come first.

 

The words went like this “they need to know that God loves them before they are reminded they have a purpose”. There was a very sensitive situation I was dealing with and these words hit me hard.

 

You see, for some, their purpose was just one more thing in life they felt they could never measure up to. Only this time, they weren’t failing themselves, they were failing God.

It is a powerful thing to see someone who knows that God loves them, watching them pursue the vision that God has given them for their life. It’s awesome! They do what they do, not because of guilt, obligation or even religion, but out of a passion and a love for a Savior who first loved them.

Much like the reminder in Revelation 2 – let’s keep the first things first…

 

STRETCH

As I thought about today’s post, one bazaar thing came to mind, Sally O’Malley of SNL fame (courtesy of Molly Shannon). It’s the whole “kick, stretch, kick” (see here).

This was the brain I was given folks. When I think of the word “stretch”, I hear Sally O’Malley! I feel that constant stretch as of lately. Not the Sally O’Malley kind but hearing Molly Shannon’s hilarity sure does make me chuckle.

Now, on to my original thought, the more spiritual one…

If it seems as if my last few posts have had a common theme, I know this and you are not crazy. I promise to give this theme a rest for the next few weeks. I am simply writing out of where I am. I know that I am not alone. My hope is that this is a reminder to all of you who feel as if you are in this area of your journey alone, you are not!

I have never felt such a bold combination of excitement/joy/confidence/challenge/vision…and GULP! Here we go! I have said before that I am so grateful to those who share their unknown in the midst of pursuing the vision God has set before them…it reminds me that we never arrive and it never just comes naturally. There is this process that never ends till we see His face…

A verse that came to mind was 2Corinthians 3:18 – And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image, from one degree of glory to another (here)…

It is a constant…we are being transformed into the same image. Glory to glory, faith to faith…it is constant.

I find myself grateful for the stretch (yup, insert said voice). There is a purpose in it…it is not comfy, but it does excite me!

 

A Post Mother’s Day Post

In honor of Mother’s Day being yesterday, I have a few things to say.

I am a forever grateful daughter to an amazing mother! There are many things I could say about my mom, who she is and what she means to me.

She is constant. She is bold. She is lovely.

Of all things bright and beautiful…she never hesitates to say “remember who you are”. That reminder is and has always been consistent. There was never a time walking out the door that we girls were left without that statement. Some would call it a reminder…it could also be heard as a command. Amazing the power of those words, in an environment where our example of a mother showed us with her life what those words meant. Even in some of the most difficult seasons, I never forgot.

I am a grateful daughter…

I am now a grateful mother.

My children grow me daily…I pray I can be such an example…what a standard.

 

Some Thoughts on Hope…

Proverbs 13:12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.

Some thoughts on hope…

Our last core team meeting we got on a conversation about the little pebbles. It is easy to recognize the big things that cause fear, doubt or just the obvious attacks. The little things, not so much, they are harder to spot. Those are the things that seem to creep in, they settle, kind of like the mucinex commercial. I apologize for the imagery but it was the thought that popped in my head.

We referred to the little things as the pebbles.

As of lately, I’ve paid more attention to the pebbles of hope. The big things are great…and believe me, we are praying for the big things. I’ve decided that with hope, there are no small pebbles. What may seem small to one may mean be the greatest reminder of God’s faithfulness and love to another.

After a long and not so wonderful day at work, I checked my mail to discover a package that included my favorite bag of Starbucks and two candles that smell like sunshine and happiness. It was sweet and for me, it was a pebble. Pretty little things can be a reminder that God sees…He created me to love pretty little things 🙂

Every time I get a text from a family member that we all got to reconnect with after 10 yrs (insert my tears here), even through great loss, that is a pebble. It’s a big pebble. It serves as a constant reminder of God’s faithfulness.

I’m reminded after time spent in quiet in the word, a text from an old student, a word of encouragement from a friend…

Sometimes we forget the pebbles of hope in the midst of great need or great pain.

Sometime we need to be reminded of the constant reminders. If “hope deferred makes the heart sick”, I wonder what can counteract?

Psalm 71:14-15 – But I will hope continually, And will praise You yet more and more.  My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness and Your salvation all the day, For I do not know their limits.

There are many desires, plans and dreams. I will hope continually!