Wednesday, December 22, 2004

It's cold!

Just as Christmas ought to be! I'm so glad it won't be a t-shirt/shorts kind of Christmas (as we often have here in Mississippi!) I love the winter! :)

I don't like the fact that there are people I love and care about who have to travel in this weather. As you may have seen, there is a snow storm hitting the North-Central portion of the US. My roommates left this morning for Illinois - it took them 11 hours to get home! I have another friend who was driving from Kentucky to Michigan tonight, but last I heard from him, he had only traveled 90 miles in 4 hours. He was having to find a hotel room because they had closed the interstate. Yikes! Hopefully, he can make it to his parents' home tomorrow.

Well, it's time to go snuggle under the covers and keep warm! Just two more days till Christmas! :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

I haven't forgotten...

that I have a blog. I can't believe how hard it is for me to get to it these days. There is so much going on in my life - perhaps that's part of the problem!

I know one thing, I'll be glad when the holidays are done. Not because I don't like them, but because they are always so rushed and packed with "stuff" to do!!! I wish I had time to just "be". Don't see that happening this week for sure!

We finally have winter-like weather!!! Woohoo! Today's high was around 44 degrees and we have another freeze warning for tonight. Now that's cuddle weather!!!! :) Just wish someone was here to cuddle with!

Anyway, I'm thinking the next year will be very interesting. I'm hoping it will. Lots of new opportunities on the horizon and the possibilities are limitless. I'm excited.

More later.

Monday, November 29, 2004

It's official....

Christmas is now here! I started listening to Christmas music today! :) I love being able to listen to Christmas music all day, but by the time Christmas comes, I'll be all holiday-ed out. I have a couple of friends that would listen to it all year if they could get away with it.

Anyway -it has been way too long since I last updated (as if you couldn't tell!) There have been other things occupying my time, but I think my life is about to level back out to some degree. You know how it is when something new is introduced into your life - you get all caught up in it until it settles down and becomes part of the everyday routine. Well, it's about that time - time to be "back to normal" - whatever that means! I had a friend tell me once that "normal" was only a setting on the washing machine! :)

So, back to the everyday routine I go. There are a couple of things that I know God has told me to take care of and deal with - things regarding my job and my personal life - so I've got to work on those areas. I believe 2005 is going to be a full year - full of even more new and exciting changes. I'm looking forward to that. God has really been working in me lately, so I'm also looking forward to what He's going to do with me in the next year.

No doubt about it, I'll have plenty to keep me busy: strengthening my relationship with Christ, spending time with family, my job, my youth group, a new business I'm building (more on that later), and of course - my wonderful friends! Who could ask for anything more! (I don't think I'd ask for more - I wouldn't be able to handle it!) :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Catching Up

Let's see...there's been a lot going on that I haven't blogged about, so here's one event I wanted to share:

It occurred on the Saturday before Halloween. I was at church, with my youth group, and we were in the middle of our meeting, when all of a sudden these people just walked into the church. They were kids, between the ages of 9-15 or 16, who were out trick-or-treating and getting into trouble. Two of them came in and wanted water. So I gave them some (our water fountain is broken, but we have a filtered water machine). Anyway, one of the kids that came in was lingering a long time, and I was trying to usher him back out. Now before you get upset at me trying to get the kid out of the church - we were at the end of our time together and this just wasn't the time to try and invite them to join us. I knew they were up to something, and I had no idea how right I was.

So I get to the door with the kid, he steps outside and I see that there are probably 5-6 other kids out there. Anyway, when I see them, I motion back to one of my kids to bring me my cell phone. As I'm turning back around to go outside, I hear this sound, like a cracking egg, and the kids start running off...or at least a few of them start running. I stand out there for just a few seconds and came back in the church and locked the door. I called my brother (who is 6'7" and weighs about 340 lbs) to come to the church. He shows up with my other brother in tow and they look around the church to see what damage was done. I figured those kids had been hurling eggs at the church. Amazingly, they found none. So we concluded our youth meeting, everyone left and I cleaned things up and locked the church. My brothers were both hanging around (the older of the two brothers happens to live right next to the church, but he was with his wife and kids at my parent's house, along with my "big" little brother.) Anyway, I go out to my car, open the back door, lay my stuff in the seat and close the door. It was then I found out what those punk kids had done. As I closed the door, I heard this sound of crunching, crackling glass. I take one step to my right and look at my rear windshield. It was completely shattered - still hanging in place - but completely shattered. I was so mad! It drives me nuts when something I own gets damaged or broken! I'm rather particular about my "stuff".

I called the police and they came out and filed a report. Needless to say, there was NOTHING they could do - or would do. One of my kids recognized one of the punks in the crowd, so I called her to get his name. The cop already knew him, but didn't act like he was even going to go talk to the kid.

Before I left the church, we knocked out the windshield, picked out as much of the glass as we could and I duct taped a garbage bag over the window - or most of it...the bag was too small! As I was leaving to go home, I saw the kid who had been in the church with me, walking with a bunch of kids. I stopped in the middle of the road, jumped out and called out to him. He came over and this state trooper, who had been parked at the gas station on the corner, came driving up. I told him what had happened and that this kid knew who had vandalized my car. He contacted the city police and they came back out....yada yada yada. Suffice it to say, because he was a minor, and his parents weren't present, they really couldn't ask him too many questions. Of course, the kid didn't know the people he'd been hanging out with all night. Yeah...right. I wanted to jerk a knot in his head! (Boy don't I sound like a loving youth leader!) It gets worse - when I realized we weren't getting anywhere and the cops weren't going to do anything, I thanked the officers for their time, and got in my car to go home. I have to confess that I said the following statement to God - "I hope they choke on their halloween candy!!!!....after they come to know you, Jesus!!!" Hey - what would you have done?!!?

Seriously though, I don't hold any hatred in my heart for those kids. I feel sorry for them. They are doomed to repeat the cycle of life their parents are living. I would guess that most, if not all of those kids, have only one parent at home and don't even know their dad. The only way for them to break out is to meet Jesus and have a real, life-changing relationship with Him. Now, I've got to figure out what part I might play in that. Honestly, I don't know any of those kids or where they live, so I can't go meet them and try to minister to them. Besides, I'm not so sure that's what God wants me to do at this time. I know He wants me to pour into the kids I have and help them to gain a solid footing in the faith. I guess I will just pray for those other kids, that God would bring the right people into their lives to challenge them. Timing is everything - and it is always better to wait on God's timing.

Thank God no one was hurt and there wasn't more damage done. My windshield has been replaced and all is well. Can't wait to see what comes up next!

Monday, November 08, 2004

Chicken, anyone?

Have you seen the Chickenfight?

It is really quite funny.

Isn't it amazing how much money a company will spend to market their products?

Sunday, November 07, 2004

What a fun weekend!

I went to see one of my best friends this weekend in Mobile, AL. Tiffany is one of those people who, when you first meet them, instantly become a lifelong friend. I just love her! She is an awesome person - full of life and love and every good thing! You can definitely see the Light of Christ in her! I want to be like her when I grow up!!!! :-D

We had a blast! For me, just being able to get away from my everyday life was a wonderful blessing. I needed some time away. I think I may be making regular trips to Mobile - it's an easy drive and it's just good to have somewhere to escape to. I'm so glad I went.

Last week was such a struggle emotionally and spiritually for me, and God allowed me some "down time". Now, I'm just trying to prepare myself for the next thing He is bringing into my life. I've learned to not get too complacent about things. Just about the time I try to settle down into a mode of operation, He seems to bring something new into my world. Don't get me wrong - I'm glad He's moving! Life is definitely interesting these days.

While I was in Mobile, we went to a Christian bookstore and I found this great devotional I'm going to start. (Maybe tonight, but probably tomorrow.) The title of the devotional is "A heart that dances" by Catherine Martin. It is an eight-week, daily devotional that focuses on building a deeper relationship with God. In the midst of all the things going on in my life, I've heard God clearly tell me that I need to learn what it means to be intimate with Him. I'm excited and a little anxious - even though I know I have no reason to be anxious. I long to know God more, and I know that it will cost me. Yes, it is crazy to even worry about what it will cost me - the reward of knowing my Lord is worth more than anything else. But there is a process of dying to self that has to be worked through in order to know a deeper relationship with God. And that is the part that scares me. After all, I've been the one in control for most of my life. Even when I gave my life to Christ at the age of 14, I didn't fully allow Him to be Lord of my life. The time has come now, however, that He has to be Lord of all or not at all. I must trust Him - nothing else matters.

So, the fear of living an unfulfilled life, empty of God's passion and fire, is greater than the fear of giving up whatever God requires of me to know Him intimately. Therefore, I am setting out on that journey. I'm striking out on the path set before me, looking always to my Guide for instructions. I know that He will take me places I could not even begin to imagine. I also know that the momentary pain of losing things I deem "valuable" will be replaced with the joy and peace that comes with an intimate relationship with God.

I can't wait to see where this adventure will take me.

Monday, November 01, 2004

My weekly update...

Apparently, I am only going to update this thing once a week! I think my problem is I've started a written journal, so most of my thoughts are going there and I have nothing for the blog. My thoughts are too personal to share with the world right now.

I will say this - when God starts working in your life, hold on! I've never been to such deep places with God as I have in the past few weeks. It's amazing. Yesterday I was telling a friend that there are times I wish I was just a "pew pickle" - you know, those people who come and do their "Christian duty" by appearing at church when the doors open, but have no real spiritual depth?!?! But then, when I think that the Creator of the Universe wants to spend time with me, taking me to deep levels of fellowship with Himself, I am overwhelmed. How can I ever wish for anything less? Wow.

God's been really working on me. Don't ever think you've got your stuff together - that's a sure invitation for God to prove otherwise! :) I'm in a period of waiting. There are a couple of things He's doing in my life, but they're not happening right now, so I must wait. In the meantime, God's been trying to get me to really learn to trust Him and make the most of the time I have right now. Too many times I get caught up and consumed with what might come down the road and forget to thank God for what is happening right now. I end up not enjoying each moment He blesses me with. If I'm not careful, I will also miss out on other things He wants to bring into my life. I don't want to miss anything that comes from God.

So...I'm re-focusing on some things He has me involved with right now. I think that when I give myself to those things, the time I spend being involved with them will bring me closer to those other things I'm waiting for. All I know is that I can't wait to see how God brings it all to pass.

There's no doubt about it - the Christian life can be hard at times, but it is never dull!

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

The fragile heart

I never understood how fragile the human heart really is - until the last couple of weeks.

I have a friend who is struggling with a broken relationship. It wasn't a long relationship, but she had poured all she is into it, hoping that her uniqueness and great qualities (which are numerous!) would be enough to help him overcome his broken heart and feelings for a former girlfriend. That never works. Now she is devastated and is near the point of giving up. Literally.

Fortunately, (or unfortunately) I've been there before, so I know what she's feeling. I wish I could make her see that she will come through and that there is hope. We can't change people. They will either love us or they won't. But if we have given everything we are to God, we will be protected and will be able to guard our heart. Does that mean it won't hurt? Heck, no. But - you can go on and not be shattered into a million pieces because of that other person's choices. God must come first.

That's what I learned from my past relationship. I have to guard my heart. I can't allow myself to go to those places of want and desire until God opens the door. I must deal with what is and be honest with myself - and with God. Over the years, I've really come to know that God is not bothered by my questions or the frustrations that I scream out to Him. I think He's glad when I do that, because it means I recognize His ability to make a difference - and my inability to do anything about it. The key is to learn to stop long enough to hear what He has to say back. I don't do that well. But even when I don't stop to hear His voice, He still manages to get His point across and I end up growing closer to Him. How awesome it is to know the Creator of the Universe cares that much about me.

Today, I was praying for my friend and something strange happened. Have you ever been praying for someone and the very words you used to pray for their need become directed at you, and you realize God means that prayer for you as well? That's what happened. I was praying these words: "God, help her to know that if she will give those passions and desires to You, You will take them and give them back in ways far above what she could ever dream or imagine." I was walking back up the steps to my office when I prayed that and nearly fell down to my knees because I was so overcome by God's presence. I've never experienced anything like it. I knew that those words were for her AND me. I believe the Holy Spirit gave me those words, because I've never prayed that before for anyone. It was awesome and yet, I was so strongly reminded that I have to give my everything to God. I can trust Him with it all - including my heart. He will treat it gently and with great care and hold it for just the right time for me to give it to someone else. I am still pondering the implications of that prayer and God's message to my own heart.

What a day. Ladies, guard your hearts. Turn them over to the One who will keep them safe until a man worthy of it comes along. We think we know when a guy is worthy, but we're just kidding ourselves. Our vision is limited and blurred by the trash of this world. We must trust the One who created us and knows for whom we were created. Who else besides the Manufacturer knows what's best for His creation? And fellas, you do the same. Give your heart to the Creator and let Him lead you when it comes to relationships. He won't lead you wrong. Just listen to His voice and trust His judgment, not your own.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Man, it's been a while!

I'm sure lots of folks have quit checking my blog since my posts are so few and far between. Trust me, it's not because there isn't anything happening - I'm just not at a place where I can talk about it. There may be much to say soon.

In other news - for some reason, my Youth Group keeps coming back! I am amazed. They are a great group of kids and I really feel inadequate for the task. I'm always asking God "What were you thinking!?!?!?!" I hate to think what they are missing out on simply because I'm new at this whole "youth minister" thingy. Oh well, I guess I'll keep pouring out my love on them and doing what I know to do - God can obviously take care of the rest of it!

14 DAYS!!!! Hope you are all keeping up with the election news. If you are undecided, please read, read and read some more. There are tons of references out on the net and on the radio for hearing what the real truth is! Don't be swayed by slick words and empty promises. Compare the records of both candidates and make your decision from that! God bless George Bush and God bless America!!!

Monday, October 11, 2004


I hate waiting. In my mind, it seems like I do that a lot, but I'm sure I don't have to wait for things any longer than most folks.

I'm trying to learn how to live in the here and enjoy the moments I have right now and not waste them looking ahead to what is coming. I'm afraid to think of the things I've missed because I was too busy standing on my toes, straining to see into tomorrow and what it would bring. I'm sure I've missed hearing God's voice many times because I have been pre-occupied with what may or may not happen.


I know God is in control and that because I've committed myself to Him, He will bring good things into my life. He can see the big picture and He knows how everything works out. At the same time, I can see where He is working and how He could be bringing those things into my life. That's where my struggle lies - seeing what He's doing on one side and on the other side - what that could mean. "X" could happen, but will it? He could be doing "X" in my life, but is that where He's taking me?

It's a bit like driving down an unfamiliar know that the road goes down over the next hill and you can see where it comes up on the next hill - but you have no idea what the road between those two points is like. It could turn a little, take you over a lake or through some trees or it could simply be a straight path from one hill to the next. You know the road is there - there are no signs that it's out - you just don't know exactly what it's like. That's where I am. I can see where I am and I think I know where I'll end up (at least on the next hill!) but I just don't know the journey from here to there. So I have to wait and see the path as I'm traveling on it.

I just hope I'll take some time to view the scenery along the way.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

The writing on the wall....

Yesterday was unbelievable. I have been put on probation for 30 days. Never in my life, have I had this kind of "discipline" at a job. Needless to say, I was floored.

Now, to be honest, I have been a bit distracted and not nearly as focused on my job as I should have been, and that has resulted in some mistakes on my part. I admit that, and I am working on improving that. But apparently, it has been so bad that my boss feels a need to take this action. Personally, I think it is a bit much....ok, a bit TOO much. I mean, I just had a review in August! How terrible could I have gotten in one month? I just don't understand.

Fortunately, it's not an "official" probation - there isn't any paperwork being filled out and it's not going through our home office. This is just something between us. He wants to see an improvement in my attitude (which he said has been better since our golf tournament) and he wants to see that I am more focused in my work. Well, ok....I can do that!

My pastor spoke last night to our congregation about the attacks that seem to be coming against a lot of our members. It would seem that we are making a difference in the Kingdom, and the enemy of our souls is not pleased. Perhaps this is just another front of his attack.

Regardless of the cause, in the midst of it all I still heard God telling me it was all ok and He is working it all out. I know beyond any shadow of doubt that my time here is coming to an end....I just don't know how, where or when. But you know what? That's ok. I have surrendered my life to God and if all of this turmoil is part of what He's doing in my life, I can make it. He'll give me just what I need, when I need it.

I'm just going to put a smile on my face and do what's expected of me.

Monday, October 04, 2004

That's just the way it is.....

I cannot believe it has happened again!

I am without my computer once again. Yes, the logic board has once again failed and I couldn't use my laptop. Hopefully, they will replace the logic board with a new, updated version. Rick, the owner of the local Mac dealership/service location, said that Apple has been replacing the boards this time with a new version. I'm hoping this will take care of the problem and I won't have to deal with it again!

In my opinion, there is no better computer you could have than a Macintosh. I've used PC's for 12 years now, and I have never had a computer that just "works" so well! Other than the logic board (which is a hardware problem) I've not had any issues with my Mac! In fact, I can use it at the office and save files to our network and then be able to open them up on my pc. It's seamless!!! I just love my Mac....and I'm going to miss it over the next few days. :(

Friday, October 01, 2004

My favorite time of the year...

I love the fall!!! Although we're not fully into the season, you can feel its' presence. It is coming soon! Most people would say that the springtime represents a time of "renewal" or it brings about a sense of "newness" and "new beginnings" for them, but the fall does that for me. I don't really know why. I can be weird sometimes. :) Sometimes, I just like to be different!

In my mind (and my experience), exciting stuff seems to happen in the fall. I think it's because the change that takes place is so evident - the leaves change and eventually fall from the trees, the air is cooler and crisper, and the days aren't nearly so long. Of course, you have to wear warmer clothes and you also get to light the fire in the fireplace. Perhaps it is the sense of closeness that comes from having to dress warmer and stay inside that I really like. Don't get me wrong- I like being outside - but I also like being inside with family and friends - and you definitely spend more time with people once the weather changes!

Another reason I love the fall is because it brings my favorite holiday - Thanksgiving! Of course, it hasn't always been my favorite. As a child, no holiday could ever compete with the decorations and excitement of receiving gifts from Santa! But as I've grown older, my holiday allegiance has switched to Thanksgiving. I guess I don't get enough of spending time with family and friends. (Well, with a few exceptions!!) But I just love being able to sit around and talk with family, share what's going on in each other's lives, see how much the kids have grown and reflect on "the good 'ole days". In addition, the food is usually good, too! :)

So it's that time of year again, and I am very excited. I'm waiting to see what this fall brings...perhaps there will be another reason to add to my list!

Monday, September 27, 2004

Time to prepare

Do you ever wish that you could just get a glimpse of what it is God is doing "behind the scenes" of your life? I know that if He were to give me that glimpse, I'd probably run away screaming, but today, I just wish I had a clue what He is up to. I'm sure I should just be thankful that He is moving and working. Don't get me wrong - I am very thankful! I just don't like not knowing what's up.

One thing I am sure of - He keeps telling me to trust and wait and in the meantime, prepare myself. Well, that begs the question...prepare for what? That's what I'm trying to figure out!

My pastor challenged us yesterday to spend this week re-examining our perceptions of who God really is and compare those with what the Bible says. I want to know God. I want to know Him like I've never known Him, because He is my everything. It's kind of funny - the theme scripture God gave me for the youth group is John 15:5 -
"I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me, you can do nothing."

Apparently, God is helping me learn to live this verse, for I am reminded of it frequently, and am having to learn how to remain in Him.

I think I'm traveling a new segment of my faith-walk, and my journey is taking me through a part of the countryside I've never seen before. I can hardly appreciate the scenery for being bothered by the fact I'm in a new place. Isn't that silly?!?! I want to relish today and not waste it wondering about tomorrow, but it is hard - especially when there are things I have to deal with today that I'm tired of dealing with.

I just want some clear direction, but perhaps the more time I spend getting to know God, the less concerned I'll be with where it is He's taking me.

Friday, September 24, 2004


All I want to say is that I'm glad it's Friday. It's been a long week and I'm beat! Maybe I'll have something more interesting to say later. :)

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Sailing along

Just wanted to say that things are going much better this week. This week I'm having to close out our two golf tournaments, so I'm staying busy - and staying out of trouble! :) God is good...that's all I know!

One thing I've got to do is get back into my regular personal schedule. This past week-and-a-half has really thrown a cog in my wheel! I haven't worked out in almost two weeks now and I've been staying up until 12 or 1am every night! I don't know what's wrong with me, but I can't keep it up. I'm excited that I'll get to the gym this afternoon. I need a hard workout!

In addition to my physical health, I've got to get back in the groove of studying the Word. I've not been reading God's Word nearly enough because of my busy schedule, and I can tell it! Good grief! I am too easily distracted from doing the important stuff!

Well, time to get back to the helm...

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

I am proud to introduce...

My pastor has hit the blogosphere!!! His blog is going to be quite a read - I can assure you! You may love him - you may hate him, but I'll bet once you start reading, you won't be able to quit!

I feel like I've had some part in the birth of his blog. Randy's been reading my posts since I began my blog last year and I'd like to think I had some influence in his decision to join this world of thoughts and ideas. You know - I do what I can! :)

Anyway, I look forward to seeing what happens.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

A quiz for everything...

Thanks to Rick for this new quiz. I haven't done one of these in a while so I thought it would be fun.


True Christian
You are humble, gracious, kind and extremely Christ-like. You believe in the bible as your law, but read it in its original language. Perhaps you're not a scholar, but you're not an amateur either. You normally don't feel church is acceptable for your form of worship, and if anyone believes different from you, you might try to learn something from them.

I don't know how to read the Bible in it's original language, but I think the rest of it is fairly accurate. How funny!

Friday, September 17, 2004


it's amazing to me how you can be surrounded by people and still feel lonely. it just sneaks up on you, busts through the door and sets up camp. eeeck. i'll be glad when it leaves. hopefully it won't be here long and there will be a long time before it shows up again.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Sometimes, it just gets old

I think the one thing I most dislike about being single is having to take care of everything for myself. If my car needs work, I have to make sure it happens. When something I own breaks, I have to fix it or get a new one.

Even though I have two roommates, I tend to be the one in the house that fixes things. It's not my roommate's fault, it's just the way it is. They even have a nickname for me. They've started calling me "Walgreens" (that's a drug store chain here in the south.) If anyone needs something, I usually have it - from bandaids and batteries to coaxial cables and extension cords. I don't understand how that happened. I guess I'm just weird.

Starting last week, our bathtub started backing up. I guess I shouldn't be surprised since there are three girls living in the house. Well, the day before yesterday it was backing up and staying backed up for a long time. We happened to have a little bit of this stuff called "Liquid Fire." Have you ever heard of the stuff?!!? It's truly amazing, but gosh it stinks!!! Basically it is sulfuric acid and it will remove any clog you have! So I used the little bit we had, hoping it would take care of the problem. Not gonna happen.

Well, today, I go and get a new bottle and when I got home, I poured half of it down the drain, waited the prescribed 15 minutes and started the cold water running down the drain. "Aha," I thought, "it worked!" But within seconds, I realized I had jumped the gun. The tub promptly began to fill up and the water wouldn't budge.

After consulting with my mom about her experience with the stuff, I decided to use the rest of the bottle. The directions say to wait until all the water had drained out, but if I had done that, I'd still be waiting. So I started pouring a little bit down the drain (the stuff went straight down the drain - it didn't even mix with the water sitting in the tub!) Then, I took the plunger and started pumping the drain. After going back and forth - pouring and pumping - the water finally went down and I poured the rest of the Liquid Fire down the drain. I waited another 15 minutes and, voila! Success!!!!! I must admit, I was proud of myself. For all of my wishing I didn't have to always tend to things, I do have a sense of pride when I can "fix" a problem.

Needless to say, it will be nice when one day I can let someone else tend to those kinds of things. At least, I hope I will marry someone who can tend to those kinds of things. :) I don't mind doing "fix-it" jobs around the house, it just would be nice to not be the only one to do it. *sigh* I guess I need to be grateful I can do those things, but like I said - sometimes it just gets old.

When in doubt, apologize

My mom gave me some good advice this morning. She told me that I should probably apologize for yesterday, whether I felt I was at fault or not. So I did. And she was right. It was the thing to do. All is well here today and we'll be just fine.


I'm still not sure about the future. We'll see what God has in store for me. In the meantime, I'll keep on doing what I'm doing and wait on God. :)

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Today, I nearly walked away

Change is in the air. Just as sure as I know my name, I know that some major changes are coming in my life. What does that mean? I really have no idea, but, for some time, I've known that I would not stay at my current job forever. It has bothered me a bit, to be honest. After all, God called me to this job. His fingerprints are all over the job and how He brought me to it, and I know that He has me there for a reason. So when I started having thoughts about moving on (about nine months to a year ago) I thought it was just me and that I was being silly.

Now I'm not so sure.

The past several weeks have really been a struggle for me. Just for the record, I love what I do and have thoroughly enjoyed my job. But I have really been struggling with thoughts of not wanting to do it anymore. The last time I experienced these feelings was when I changed jobs and began to work at my current postition. Needless to say, it's a little scary. I think God may be working in me to prepare me, but for what....I don't know.

So today, I almost quit. No joke. I have never had a week like this one. Without going into too much detail, let's just say it's been stressful. We had a major event yesterday and have another one on Monday. My boss graciously gave me the first half of the day off, so I got into work at lunchtime. Yesterday, there were some problems and we had a little "discussion" at the event that didn't help things (on my end) but we got past that and everything was fine today. I came in and started right to work on getting past yesterday's event. My boss told me what he wanted to get done, so I was working on those things. Toward the end of the day, I was working on stuff for next week when he came to my desk and asked me "How's it looking?" which really means - what are you working on and where are you with it. I got so frustrated. I started to just say "fine" but I just sighed, looked up at him and asked him "what do you want me to tell you?" It wasn't the the question itself that he asked me, it was the way he asked me. Again, I don't want to go into too much detail and beat a dead horse (to quote a friend of mine) but the end result was we got into another "discussion" in which my boss asked me if I enjoyed my job. I told him, "not this week" and he asked me if I wanted to do something else. I actually hesitated for a split second (or two) before I said, "no. I like what I do." But I must admit - I felt very disingenuous.

Now, let me pause and say that I couldn't believe he asked me that question. Truthfully, I do enjoy my job and I have never had so much "trouble" as I've had this week. The guys I work for are very good about telling me how much they appreciate me and thank me on a regular basis for the things I do for them. And, as far as I know, I've never given any indication that I'd rather be somewhere else - because I haven't ever felt that.....until this week.

Anyway, we "had it out", so to speak, and I think we're ok or will be ok. I'm sure once we get past next week's event, we'll have a meeting to discuss this week. My boss likes to discuss things. I'm praying about it - asking God to show me where I was at fault or need to change and how I need to respond to my boss. I don't know what it all means. I've never been this disatisfied with my current job and I don't know for sure where this feeling is coming from. All I do know is this - God let me get absolutely miserable in my last job so that I would even think of looking elsewhere. I don't want to have to get to that point again. If He has somewhere else for me to be, I'm ready to go there. I'll do whatever He wants me to do and go wherever He wants me to go.

In spite of the unease of this week, I know that God is in control. He is doing something within me and perhaps this is just a by-product of that. Everytime there is growth in my spiritual life, every other area of my life is directly affected. My life started changing in major ways when I became the youth director at my church. Only God knows where it will all end up.

The hurricane cometh!

Although I live in central Mississippi, we will feel the effects of the hurricane before the week is out. You would not believe the traffic coming from the south!!! I have a friend from Mobile who was traveling to McComb, MS with her parents last night. She called me around 9:30 to get an update on the weather and told me they had traveled about 2 miles in as many hours! My uncle and aunt left Gautier at 7:30 pm and made it to my parent's house at 5:30 this morning - a trip that would normally be 3 hours, tops!!!! Unbelievable!

It appears this is going to be a very rough storm. Keep all those people who live on the coast in your prayers. I know they all pray they will have a home when it's over.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Spiderman in church

I just love kids. They are truly unique! Today in church, my nephew provided one of those "Kodak moments" for which you wish you had a video or digital camera to record it.

A couple in our church officially joined today, so after giving his intro and speaking to the couple, our pastor asked everyone to stand and extend their hand towards them as he prayed over them. My roommate was standing next to my four-year-old nephew and just happened to look over at him as everyone was extending their hands. She about lost it when she noticed his arm was extended and his hand was in the "spray web" gesture made popular by Spiderman and acted out by kids across this nation pretending to be him.

Of course, she elbowed her sister and she about lost it too. By then, other people on the pew noticed and were chuckling under their breath. What makes it so funny is that he wasn't trying to be funny! He was sincerely reaching his hand out in prayer. It's just that he is such a Spiderman freak, it comes out in the smallest ways. You should see the way he jumps around the house.

Since none of our family actually saw my nephew's actions, we got a good laugh when my roommate shared the story.

Friday, September 10, 2004

A little change

I decided to use the comment feature provided by, so any comments left prior to today will not be available. I think this feature will be more functional.

Also - I've enabled the feature that will allow you to email any of my posts to a friend. Go ahead, spread the love! :) Feel free to share any of my wit and wisdom with your friends! Ha!

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

I highly recommend...

This is the best cd I've listened to in quite some time. It is simply beautiful. The name of the group is "Amici Forever" and the title of the cd is "The Opera Band".

If you like opera, this is a fabulous cd to add to your collection. But - even if you're not really that fond of opera music, I still think you would like this cd. Anyone who loves and can appreciate good music will like this cd. I guarantee it.

How do I know? Well, the only reason I even found this cd was because one of the songs on it was playing in the background at Borders bookstore. It was so incredible, that as I was walking through the music section, I came to a complete stop when I heard it playing. I immediately flagged down a sales associate to tell me what cd was playing. I'm telling you - it is just that good!

Of course, music always speaks to me. I can be in a crowd of hundreds of talking people and still be able to zero in on music that is playing. I thank God for His gift of music in my life. I hope I can pass that along to others in some way.

Don't just do something....sit there!

This was the title of my pastor's message on Sunday. It was based on 1 Samuel 13 where Saul jumps the gun and is disobedient to God because he didn't think things were moving along fast enough. Because of his taking charge and doing things his way, he ended up losing the kingdom and ultimately the presence of God in his life - and didn't even realize when He had left! Yikes! It is another confirmation in my life that God is teaching me to wait....and listen....and trust...and totally surrender everything to Him...and did I mention, wait? I told a friend tonight that I wish God would just quit talking to me (NOT REALLY!) I'm very glad to know that God is speaking to me. Means I'm still "in"! :)

Seriously though, each day that goes by just reinforces what I hear God speaking in my heart. The other day, I posted about surrendering everything to God, but I have since realized that I've just begun that journey. Silly of me to think that it was a one-time "surrendering" and then all would be right in the world. Ha! I now see the foolishness of my wisdom - I don't have as much as I thought I did! Surrendering is a daily, no wait....hourly....oops, wrong again...minute by minute thing! At least for me it is. I will admit, there are stretches of my day where it isn't an issue, but that's usually because at that moment I don't have time to sit around and think about things. I get into trouble when I have free time. :)

Today, we had a staff meeting, and my boss had us pair up and put into practice Romans 12:15, which says, "Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." He asked us to share something we were rejoicing over with our partner and then pray for one another, specifically mentioning them by name. I shared with my co-worker that I am excited by what I see God doing in my life. This whole lesson in trusting and surrendering is exciting to me - even though it is at times painful. Just the other day, I was really struggling. I was feeling depressed and just didn't want to be around others or do anything. So, I started examining my heart to determine what was really the core issue. I made myself think of all the things God has done in my life and began to thank Him for those things. Then I asked myself why was I depressed. The thought went through my head that "Christy" was having a hard time dying. That part of me that has been warring with God over this whole surrender issue was not happy and was making me miserable. All I could do after that was laugh at myself. One of these days, I'll look back over this period of my life and think how silly I was for all of my attitudes and struggles. At least I hope I will. But for now, I am a bit glad for the struggle - it means that something is happening. I guess it really is like childbirth (although I don't know the reality of that experience!) If there wasn't the struggle and pains of labor, there would not be the birth of a child. And, so I'm learning, that is true in our spiritual life as well. If we are not feeling the pain of being outside of our "comfort zone" and having what is comfortable taken from us, then we probably aren't really walking in the path God has set for us.

Anyway, I will continue to learn to sit and wait on God and listen closely for the sound of His still, small voice so that when He does speak, I will be ready to do what He asks. Oh, I can hardly wait! :)

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

What a nice guy

I live in an interesting neighborhood. It is in a part of town that was once the prime neighborhood of doctors, lawyers and the upper echelon of society. These days, it is the dividing line between the last section of our city that is considered upper class and the ghetto. Literally. I live on a main street - which is always busy - and if you go over a couple of streets in one direction, you can find any type of drug, prostitue and den of iniquity you can imagine. A couple of streets over in the other direction, you'll find some people from the artsy segment of our local society as well as a few doctors, lawyers, young couples just starting out and a rather substantial homosexual population. As I said, it is an interesting neighborhood and I love being a part of it!

So tonight, I went to the grocery store in the center of this neighborhood to pick up a few things. This store is an interesting establishment in itself. Located in the strip next to it is an old-time drug store (that still sells milkshakes in the tall soda glass), an antique store and a novelty store that sells decorative items. I think there may be one other store, but I can't remember for sure. Needless to say, the people who shop at this grocery store tend to be regular visitors - not because the store is modern or offers a wide selection of items - but because it is in a central location. Very convenient. Anyway, because of the neighborhood (remember the rough section of the hood?) every night there is an officer from the Sherrif's department standing guard. The guy is huge! He must be about 6'10", african-american, looks to be in good shape, and is obviously not someone you would want to tie up with. In spite of his appearance, he is the most awesome guy! Every time I go into that store, I've seen him go way beyond his duty as an officer and pitch in and help bag groceries, direct store traffic or tell folks where to find things. Tonight I went in there and the store was way short in staff, so the line began to build up. The man jumped right in there directing those people with just a few items over to the Information Desk to get checked out and was helping to bag people's groceries. I watched him as he talked with several people as he did his thing. There was this old couple in there who he apparantly knew and he yelled out to gentleman, "Hey, Pop!!" It was so cool! What was even more awesome was to see how the other people waiting in line began to smile at each other and went out of their way to be courteous in the difficult circumstances. It was almost like a scene right out of a Norman Rockwell painting! How cool is that?

I'm almost positive the man knows Christ. You don't see people going out of their way like that unless they have a knowledge of true love...the knowledge of a Man who died to save us all. As I was walking out of the store, this officer had resumed his position at the door, so I stopped to tell him how much I appreciated his willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty. What a blessing he was to me because of his actions. I can only hope that I would inspire someone else in the same way.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

This could get interesting...

I don't know what God is doing, but He's up to something! I know He's been working in my life, but today our pastor shared that he felt God was telling him we (our congregation) should get ready.

"Ready for what?"

*crickets chirping in the background*

I've also sensed this in my own life. We've been seeing some incredible growth that can only be attributed to a move of God. I mean, we haven't done anything special - except of course, be available to be used by God.

As I mentioned in my last post, I'm in a new place in my walk with God, but today I sensed that I've only scratched the surface. I was driving home, contemplating all the things that have been happening, and reflecting on how I feel like I am in a place of brokenness, when the thought ran through my head - you've only just begun. Yikes! What do you mean?!?!? There's more? Does that mean it will get worse before it gets better? Oh Lord, you've got to be kidding!!!

*no answer*

I know what He's telling me. I guess I should be glad that at least He's given me a "heads up" of sorts. All I can do - or want to do - is cling tightly to Him during this time. Like I said, this could get interesting.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Another first...

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In everything you do, acknowledge him and he will direct your path." Proverbs 3:5-6

For the first time in my life, I am actually able to live this verse. It is a wonderful place to be. I've always tried to trust God and felt like I was giving everything to Him, but I was kidding myself. This past week - I have done it.

I guess it is because I have finally surrendered everything to Him. My heart and mind are now together in understanding my need to depend on God. Does that mean I still don't have moments where I struggle with emotions or my own desires? No, not at all. But now, I have learned to deal with those emotions and desires and place them at the foot of the Cross, and yes - leave them there.

I must have Jesus. I can no longer try to live things my way. I hope I will stay in this place of brokenness. Unfortunately, I know me, and I'm sure I will have to sacrifice myself again, but for now, I am so at peace with my Lord. I know He is taking care of me and I know that I will receive His best blessings in my life.

How awesome it is to be in this place. God is so faithful and true.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

One other thing...

I know my posts have been few and far between here lately, but I'm going to be better at keeping up. It's weird how not blogging leaves an empty place, but honestly, I haven't wanted to blog very much. Perhaps I just needed a break from the blogosphere, too!

God is so good

I just wanted to say that I love God more than anything. He has, once again, proven Himself to be so faithful and He has given me everything I need - just when I need it. How can I ever complain??

All praise goes to Him!

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Vacation's over.

Well, it's time to go back to work. I wish I didn't have to. I could use another week off!!!! Unfortunately, our schedule at work doesn't allow for that. However, I think I'll be taking some days as soon as I can. I've got some people I need to go visit, so I won't be letting my days get wasted this year!

Anyway, it was good to be off, but I didn't get done hardly any of the things I had planned to do. I've got staff training I have to finish by next Tuesday (the 31st) and I had planned on working on that while I was off. Of course, I didn't even look at it! At this point, I don't even care. I wish I didn't have to do it at all!!! I almost don't even care that I'd get a letter in my personnel file for not getting it done. Almost. So what that means is I'll be working on it every night this week. I think I'll be able to get it finished. In fact, a couple of my staff are supposed to come to the office so I can help them get theirs done. I'll be working right alongside them! Maybe I can get most of it done at work - then my nights will be my own!!

*Sigh* So much to do, and so little time to do it!

There is some good news in my life - the youth group has taken off and seems to be exploding! I had 4 kids last Saturday, and then this weekend I had 10!!! That has to be a record somewhere! :) I am truly excited by what's taking place. It is God's work, I'm just awed that He is letting me go along for the ride! I'll try to post more on "my kids" this week.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

I'm so excited!!!

I'm actually on "vacation"! Woohoo! The only bad news is that I'm not on a beach somewhere, listening to the crash of the waves on the shore. :( Nevertheless, it was sooo nice to be able to sleep in today. I won't do that again, but it was nice for once.

I need to get better at taking all of my vacation days. Alas, I will lose several days because I didn't get them in by August 31. However, this next year I will be better. Since I'm the new youth minister for my church, I will have more reasons to need days off....for things like camp, youth trips, etc. I hope we have an exciting year!

Speaking of my youth group - I love them! I see so much potential - for good and bad - and have been praying over them a lot! If I can make a difference in just one of their lives I will be SO happy! They seem to be really excited by what we have going on and I hope it will continue to be exciting for them. At our first meeting, I told them that we weren't meeting just to have something to do. I want them to learn God's purpose for their lives and be able to impact others. Needless to say, it is going to be an interesting year. I believe it!

Well, let me get back to enjoying my "vacation"!

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Stop the world, I want to get off!!!

It seems like everything is speeding up! I don't know where all my time goes.

Well, the steroids and antibiotics seems to have worked - as far as stopping the stabbing pain that was going through my left temple. My doctor thinks I probably do have trigeminal neuralgia, but we won't know for sure until I have another spell. (Oh goodness, that sounds so..."old"!) Anyway, I'm disposed to think I do have it, so I can only hope that I don't experience that pain again for a LONG time! It really hurt!

So anyway - in spite of taking antibiotics for 10 days, I now have a head cold and possibly an ear infection! I mentioned it to my doctor when I saw her on Tuesday, and she said that probably means what I have is viral - and there's no treatment. I just have to wait it out. Good grief! I refuse to give in, so I've been going on about my days as usual, but by the end of the day, I'm beat!

Well, let me get back to work. I've got to do some work on my plans for the youth group AND I have about 60-70 hours worth of Staff Training I have to get in before September 1st. It's my own fault - we've had this stuff for over a year now but I never made it a priority - until now - and then only because I'll get a letter put in my personnel file. Eeck! Fortunately, I've got some days off next week. I know what I'll be doing for some of that time!

Saturday, August 07, 2004

What a night!

Well, my first youth event is in the bag! It was a ton of fun and I would say a complete success. I accomplished what I set out to do - get acquainted with the young people in my youth group. I feel like I connected in some way with most of them and hope to begin the process of getting to know them better - even those who may not be a "regular" in our group but who will visit with us from time to time. Overall, I am very pleased, but I can see the long road ahead.

More than before, I was made very aware of how much I am going to have to depend on God. Over the past few weeks, I've been going over tons of things in my head - from nailing down our purpose statement (which I think I may have after tonight) all the way to the logisitics of actually ministering to and meeting with these kids and what that will look like. But when we all came together as a group, I realized that I had been making my plans on my understanding of the way things are - of the spiritual depth of each of these kids, of their personalities, of God's plan for their lives, of my response to them...

All of it, of course, was wrong. How could I ever think my understanding would be right? After all, the only thing I knew about most of these kids was what I'd seen of them at church. Duh. With the exception of a couple of the kids, I don't really know anything about their home life, their experience with God or the church, and I certainly don't know what they like or dislike - all of these things (and more) have made them who they are. Only God knows their hearts and His will for their lives.

So all the scenarios and plans I'd been mulling over in my mind have been trashed or at the very least are up for a serious re-examination. I am truly going to have to be open at all times to what God is speaking to me. I may experience something in my day that God wants me to use to reach these kids or that will give me insight into what's happening in their lives. I don't know what it is they need, but He does.

In spite of my discovery, I'm still very excited! I can't wait to see God use these young people to impact others.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

What's the deal?

Is it just me or has this been an unusually strange week for everyone? I don't know if it's the drugs I'm taking or just plain being tired, but I can't figure it out. I'm having a hard time even putting my thoughts together about it all.

My mother has two brothers in the hospital with serious health conditions, and we just found out my dad's brother died tonight. This opens up a whole new area of my life I don't really want to deal with yet. My uncle was a diabetic but died from a heart attack. This year had been really tough for him. How does this directly affect me? My dad is also a diabetic, and it is getting more obvious, at least to me and my mom, that his health is slowly dwindling. It is not something we really want to deal with or think about.

I guess it's just another aspect of life, but here in America, we don't really talk about it, do we? With all the advancements in technology and science, we've learned how to extend our lives so that we don't die until we're much older. Unlike other countries, where death is a fact of daily life - either because of poor living/health conditions or war - death in America, for most people, only happens every now and then.

The one thing that comforts me is knowing that my father has given his life to Christ and will be in heaven when he dies. Same thing is true for my mom. I don't know how people without faith in God deal with death. I cannot imagine it. Wouldn't want to imagine it, really.

It's funny, just a little earlier tonight, before I found out about my uncle, I was thinking through this very issue of eternal life and the security I have in knowing Christ. In my mind, while I was eating dinner, I was having a conversation with an unbeliever. It was kind of strange - I wasn't trying to convince the person that I was right or that they were wrong. I was simply telling them that I knew what was in my future and hoped they were sure about their choice. I guess, when it comes down to it, we don't have to convince people of the truth of God's word (since they wouldn't understand it anyway without God revealing it to them.) I just have to be ready to give an answer for the hope I have within me. If I'm living my life to know Christ and His spirit is within me, others will know there is something different about me and be curious as to the cause. I wonder how many people would be "won to the Lord" if more Christians simply lived a life of confidence in their Savior. I've often been challenged by the Holy Spirit as to whether or not I'm going to live like I truly believe God's word - that means even in the small stuff...especially in the small stuff.

Well, it's a lot to ponder and I'm tired. Just wanted to share those thoughts. Be sure to take full advantage of the time you have with those you love. We truly are not guaranteed tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Illness was not in my vocabulary, until now

You know how you hear stories of people suffering from one ailment or another and you think, "Awww, that's too bad! I'm glad it's not me!" Well, this time it's me...maybe.

Over the past year, every once in a while, I have experienced a sharp pain shooting along the left side of my head. It would scare me, but I'd wait to see if it would do it again, and when it didn't happen, I'd go on about my day. Well, this weekend, it happened, once....twice....three times....I really began to be concerned. On top of that, I had a headache which lasted all weekend. So I decided I'd better get it checked out.

I went to see my physician - actually she's a nurse practitioner, but I really like her. Anyway, I go see my healthcare provider, tell her my symptoms and she lays a new medical term on me I'd not ever heard before. She tells me I might have trigeminal neuralgia. It is a disorder which affects the trigeminal nerve of the cranium. In plain english, the largest nerve on the side of my head is being irritated for some reason. To be accurate, I haven't been officially diagnosed as having the disorder, but the more I read about it and the more time that goes by causes me to believe she could be right. Currently, I'm taking steroids (which have left me feeling sick to my stomach until tonight) and antibiotics (which she prescribed today as a result of my labwork - my white blood count is elevated a little.)

Come to find out, my mother's aunt had this problem, also known as tic douloureaux, and had to have the nerve in her face cut to keep from being in pain. Evidently, her episodes would happen over several days and would lay her low for at least a week. According to my healthcare provider, it is something that is hereditary. Great.

Uggh! Did I mention I hate being ill? I am not a good patient and I don't like people, in general, when I don't feel well. I'm just glad most of the guys were out of the office today. :)

So my biggest frustration right now is just not knowing for sure what's wrong. I've had the shooting pains several times over the past couple of days and if they continue, I'll be going back to the doctor tomorrow. I'm praying that it's nothing and is just some freak thing, but even if it is trigeminal neuralgia, I hope that God will heal me of it. If not, I'm going to have to learn how to deal with it and learn how to be nice to people when I'm suffering. ;)

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Out of the mouth of babes....

I just love kids! Especially my brother's (since I don't have any of my own!)

Tonight I went with my sister-in-law and the kids to VBS (Vacation Bible School) at the church we all used to attend. Some friends of mine are directing and teaching at the Bible school, so I called my sister-in-law to see if she wanted to take the kids. We decided to go!

The kids had a blast and we had a great time watching them! I have mixed emotions and thoughts about VBS these days. It's probably because of my issues with "religion" and anything "religious". I can't stand the thought of doing something just because it's always been done, and sometimes I feel that VBS falls into that category.

Anyway, I just felt like it was something good for the kids and that's why I suggested it to my sister-in-law. They've never experienced anything like it.

So tonight, on the way back to their house, I asked the kids what they had learned in their class. I knew they talked about Paul, so I asked what they had learned about him.

"They put him in a bakset," replied Mackenzie.

"And what did they do with him then?" I asked.

"Threw him out the window," says Hannah.

My sister-in-law and I about died laughing! In case you're not sure why, the real story is that in order to save Paul, his friends lowered him in a basket down the outside wall of the city. Needless to say, we had a blast. I was reminded of how precious and wonderful kids are and I can understand why Jesus would want them around Him. It makes me wonder what funny things were said by the children He held on His lap.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Time flies when you're having fun

I can't believe how long it's been since I last posted! There is so much going on right now! Yikes!

Well, I met with my pastor this past Sunday night to go over the Youth Ministry Plan. I was so nervous! Fortunately, it was a great experience. I don't know what I expected, but my nervousness went away almost as soon as we started discussing things. His questions helped me to get a better handle on what I'm doing and I'm even more excited. Some things he said really helped me to see myself more clearly and to not be afraid to be different in my planning and vision. Like I said - it was a great meeting.

So now, I'm working on revising my ministry plan and putting on paper more specific plans for our group. I'm still a little anxious about the first time our youth group will meet, but I am really trying to be better at listening to God and trust Him for direction.

In other news: I may have an opportunity for a really cool road trip next week. I don't want to say too much about it right now, because it might not happen, but trust me - if I get to do it, you'll be the first to know! (Ok, maybe not the first!) :)

At work things are about to really kick into high gear. School starts in about 3 weeks and then we have a golf tournament the second week in September. Next week we have a staff retreat...this is where our staff from all over the state will come together and plan for the upcoming year. It will be an interesting few weeks....months, to say the least!

Monday, July 12, 2004

Getting ever closer to the day

This Sunday, it will be officially announced that I am the Youth Minister for our church. Woohoo!

I've been working on my Youth Ministry Plan. It is overwhelming, yet so exciting. I have all these thoughts and ideas running through my mind...the hard part is sorting through all that I'm learning and planning and put it in perspective to deal with reality. You know, the reality of what is right now- not what I can see happening way out in the future. Sometimes I'm guilty of running headlong into things without really thinking it through or planning very well. I can see right now, that has got to stop!

I think the reality of what being a youth minister is has begun to set in. Today I was sharing with my friend, Kathy, that I'm realizing that I can't just wait to the last minute to do things - you don't understand how hard that is for me. I tend to procrastinate. I told Kathy that God is definitely moving me out of my "comfort zone". I don't like it, yet I want to move and grow and be more than what I am right now.

It is scary to think that while I'll be responsible for leading the youth at our church, I am still growing in my walk with Christ. Pride within me doesn't want for people to see me fall flat on my face or show the side of me that isn't quite perfect (that really is FAR from perfect!) But I know I will. I want it all to be good and perfect without any problems or issues.....I know, in a "perfect" world, right? Seriously though, I do know that problems will come - in my own life and with the ministry. I just hope that when they do, I don't crumble into a thousand pieces but run straight to the arms of my Father and trust in His strength to get me through.

The truth is, I've never really been in this place in my walk of faith; this place that puts me right out in front as an intercessor for the young people who will be in my care and a target for the enemy. It is a scary and thrilling place to be. Whoever said being a Christian was boring?!!?!?

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Lessons in faith from Spider-Man

Friday night, I went to see one of the best movies I've ever seen. Seriously. In my opinion, Spider-Man 2 joins the ranks of movies like The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Star Wars (the original trilogy), ET and Super Man (the original movie) as movies that re-tell the Greatest Story Ever Told. I'm not saying these movies are a word-for-word narrative of the Gospel, but if you are paying attention, you can see the story of Christ and His sacrifice and even see reminders of life lessons that are told throughout the Bible.

*****MOVIE SPOILER***** (If you haven't seen the movie and don't want it ruined for you, stop reading now!)

For instance, in Spider-Man 2 - Peter Parker struggles with a major choice for his life. Does he do what he has been gifted to do, sacrificing all that he wants, and serve humankind as Spider-Man or does he only live to please himself? We see him go through the process of discovery to find out which choice he can live with.

I so understand his struggle. Every day, I have to choose for whom I am living - me or God. Am I going to do my own thing or will I live to fulfill the purpose God created me for? I believe it's a struggle we all deal with.

The movie's writers and director were so clear in showing what happened to Peter when he chose to live life for himself. As he struggles with this issue, he begins to lose his "powers" - sometimes his webs don't work and he's left flying through the air with nothing to catch him. Once he makes the choice to leave Spider-Man behind, he loses all his powers and becomes just like anyone else - he has no super-strength, no webs, no ability to climb walls and he even loses his sight again and has to start wearing his glasses. Interesting, isn't it?

Isn't that what happens to us when we walk outside of God's will and do things our way? We begin to stumble and fall in every area of our lives and don't have the power to overcome the smallest obstacles.

As Peter begins to live life his way everything on the outside looks good - he's able to do his homework and excel in school, keep his promises to his friends, is getting rest and even gets close to getting "the girl" - but on the inside, he knows something isn't right. He sees people in trouble and knowing he could help them, he turns away. This keeps eating at him until one night, he comes across a building on fire and even though he's no longer Spider-Man, he rushes into the building to save a child. In the process of saving the girl, he nearly gets them both killed. He tried to do the right thing on his own as Peter Parker and nearly failed. Once outside, while breathing oxygen from the paramedic's truck, he hears that there was another person who died in the fire. It is then he realizes that had he been Spider-Man, he could have saved that person.

Peter is in the process of readjusting his life to again become Spider-Man when he is confronted By Dr. Octopus. His powers, which had left him, once again begin to return and he is able to save Mary Jane from being crushed by a car. Dr. Octopus (who knows that Peter Parker has some relationship with Spider-Man because he takes Spidey's pictures) tells Peter to have Spider-Man meet him. He then tosses Peter aside and takes Mary Jane as his hostage. In that instant, when someone Peter loves is threatened, he knows he must do whatever it takes to save her. He must become Spider-Man again.

It was so interesting to me the imagery the moviemakers used to show this transformation in Peter. He steps outside the coffee shop, still wearing his glasses but everything is terribly fuzzy, so he takes them off and his vision is clear. I'll tell you, I almost started crying. Isn't it true that when we accept what it is we are called to do that our vision becomes clear? God was speaking right to me through that movie. That, in itself, is an interesting experience. As I shared in an earlier post, I know that God has called me to work with the youth, but I hadn't accepted His purpose for my life because it wasn't quite the way I thought it should be. There were (and are) things I have to give up in order to fulfill what He's called me to be. Funny thing is, once I accepted it, things have begun to come together and I see my "vision" getting clearer.

Anyway, I won't tell the rest of the movie in detail, but there is some strong imagery of the Cross and Christ's sacrifice in the film. Very cool. The other awesome part of the story is that even though Peter gave up his desires, when he became Spider-Man and began to live out his purpose, he still got what he wanted. Isn't that what the Bible says? "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4

So there you have it. My humble ramblings about lessons in faith from Spider-Man. God is truly amazing. He can even use a movie to reinforce His message.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

What a great day!

Well, I thought turning 31 would mean my birthday wouldn't be anything special. I was wrong! My birthday turned out a lot better than I expected!

My friend, Kathy, who has been working with us part-time, got to work before I did and left me a bunch of "happys" on my desk. I was so shocked to walk in and see a plant (I call it my "Birthday Tree" - it's a big one!), gift basket and a gift bag on my desk. I thought she had told the guys in the office about my birthday and they managed to get their gifts their early - but all that was from her! In addition to those gifts, she took me to lunch. Kathy is a wonderful friend!

But the fun didn't end there!

After lunch, I received two flower arrangements! I've never gotten this many flowers in my life!!! One of the guys on my staff, and his wife, sent me a cute bouquet of flowers and my precious friend, Tiffany, (you know who you are!) sent me another arrangement that was simply beautiful! I was so overwhelmed!

It was just a great day and I really felt special. Not only did I get those thoughtful gifts, but I received many phone calls and emails from family and friends. I'm so terrible about remembering birthdays, I always feel guilty when people remember mine! That will have to change if I'm going to be a good youth leader! I really should do it so I'll be a better "friend" to my friends!!!

Sometimes we think the small things we do for people don't amount to much, but I believe those are the things that count the most. I think my favorite "gift" of the whole day was a handmade card from Kathy's granddaughter. Trishten is nine and just came back from youth camp a couple of weeks ago, deeply impacted by Christ moving in her heart. Kathy told me there was a song they sung during camp that Trishten especially liked, so I made her a cd containing some great worship music - and this song ("Here I Am to Worship"). Evidently, Trishten has just been awed that the cd is hers forever and was so thankful, she asked her Nana if she could make me a birthday card (I guess she noticed Kathy getting the stuff together for my birthday.) Anyway, in the card, she told me I was "sweet as pie" and I'll tell you - that made my day!

That's what kind of impact I want to have on the young people I will work with. Not that I am so great - but that they are drawn closer to God and are blessed because of something I did to touch them.

As I said, it was a great day!

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Another year gone by

Tomorrow I will turn 31. Woohoo!

I must say, my life as it is today is not what I envisioned it would be when I was 21. My plans were to be a wife and mother, raising kids and working in ministry alongside my husband by this stage of my life. The only part of that dream that resembles my life today is "working in ministry" - but I'm doing that by myself.

I do believe that all of those things will happen in my life, but obviously, I've had the events out of order. I've been wondering for the past week or so what other plans God had (or has) for me that I've missed because I thought my life should go a certain way. It's kind of scary to think about. So I don't dwell on it too long and now I'm working at learning to hear God's voice each day. I've already let 31 years go by without fully giving everything to God, so I don't want to do that anymore and miss what God has planned for me.

The youth ministry plan is coming along, although I didn't get to it tonight like I wanted to. :( Instead, I clipped my dog's hair (you would not believe how much I cut off of her!!), gave her a bath and then cleaned the bathroom! :) Tomorrow night I'll work on it - we're not having church, so I can stay home and work on it - I've got lots of reading to do! I have to have that ready to give to my pastor by next Friday. Good grief how time flies!

Guess I'd better get some sleep - I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow!

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Like a kid in a candy store

Do you know how many resources are out there for youth ministry? Oh my gosh!!! Go online or to the local Christian bookstore, and you can find a book for every aspect of ministry you could think of. The hard part is filtering through everything to get the best of the best. That's rather hard when you're just starting into youth ministry! I don't know where to begin! On top of that, I've got a short deadline to formulate a ministry plan, so there's only so much I can read before that date.

Fortunately, I think I got a hold of some good stuff yesterday. I picked out a couple of books that I think will be very helpful. One of them is a book based on the ever popular "Purpose Driven Life". This book is titled, "Purpose Driven Youth Ministry" by Doug Fields. I liked what I read on the jacket cover and in the forward. I think it will be a great resource to draw upon as I develop our Youth Ministry Plan.

Yikes! I sound grown-up! When did that happen?!?!?! I can't believe they're going to let me be in charge of something!! (My pastor reads my blog - do you think he's getting nervous yet?) :)

Anyway, I'd better hit the books and start formulating that plan. I'm excited and can't wait to see what I come up with!

Tuesday, June 29, 2004


How about this - I pull in the driveway, open the door to my car and start gathering my laptop, purse, etc., to go in the house. Just as I turn in my seat to stand up, I feel this sharp pain in the back of my right leg. I stand there for a second trying to figure out what the heck that could have been when all of a sudden I feel another sharp pain on the front of my leg. A WASP! I drop almost everything and start beating my pants leg to get it out - so that it wouldn't sting me again. It drops to the ground and starts crawling away and I stomp the durn thing. Do you know how long it's been since I was stung by a wasp (much less stung twice)?!?!?!? I was a child the last time that happened. I tell you, I'm not normally a wimp when it comes to pain (at least I don't think so) but those wasp stings hurt (and are still hurting!!!) I almost cried!

Anyway - besides that, it has been a great day. I am so excited about being the youth leader at my church! My mind has been racing since I finally got over the haze of what I have gotten myself into! Now I'm just pumped up. I've got a deadline to formulate a ministry plan and I'm a little freaked about that. I've never built a youth program from the ground up, so this is new territory for me. Fortunately, there are a ton of great resources out there and my pastor emailed me some guidelines for establishing a ministry plan. I'm just really seeking God for His wisdom and leadership. I want this whole thing to be about Him and not me. I'll keep you posted as to what develops!

Sunday, June 27, 2004

Life is about to get really interesting

A couple of weeks ago, my pastor shared a thought in his sermon that stuck in my mind. He said that God sometimes doesn't answer our prayers about one particular thing in our lives because He's wanting us to deal with another issue before He moves on that other thing. I knew that applied to me, but I wasn't sure exactly how. I thought there must have been some "hidden sin" in my life that I wasn't confessing, but I couldn't come up with anything. Turns out, it wasn't that at all.

I've always known that God has called me to work in ministry, but I've never been real clear (at least to myself) about what exactly that meant. In my mind, I would meet "Mr. Right" (who is called to ministry, too) and we would enter the "Ministry" together and serve the Lord with all our hearts. Evidently, meeting "Mr. Right" first is not God's plan for me. I never got to the call on my own life because I was waiting for God to bring "Mr. Right" along. That whole idea came from a pure heart - I truly believe that the youth of today need the influence of Godly men in their lives and I wanted to be a part of seeing that happen. I want to be married to a Godly man who loves working with young people - and I do believe that will happen someday - it's just that I have been trying to tell God how it needed to come about and I wasn't listening to Him about what He wants to do in me and through me. I know I don't have to be married to be "complete", I just have always wanted to be married. Still do.

But - for now - I am going to be the Youth Pastor or Leader (or whatever title comes with the job) at my church. That is scary to me!! That means I have a new responsibility - an incredible responsibility - to these young people. And I will answer to God for what I do with what He's giving me.

So, anyway, this answers the question in my mind as to why I've been feeling so empty. I've always known that my own spiritual growth goes through the roof when I am involved in ministry to others - especially young people. I thought I was doing that. I guess I was doing ministry my way and not God's. I'm excited to see what God is going to do with me and the young people at our church. As I said - life is about to get really interesting!

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Oh how I love music!

I'm sitting here watching the AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs and I cannot express the feelings I'm experiencing! (I'm amazed at how many of these songs I know!)

I just love what music can do. It has the ability to move one in ways nothing else can. How many times have you been driving down the road and a song comes on that reminds you of a friend, a past love, a dream.....anything? I don't think people realize how much of an impact music has made on our lives. I know for me, when I really want to fellowship with God, I immerse myself in music - either by playing some of my favorite worship cd's or getting by myself on the piano.

Unfortunately, I haven't been having many times of fellowship here lately. Oh, I know there are other ways to go about it, but I can always tell when my spiritual life is getting weak - the music is the first thing to fade away. When that fades, I lose the desire to even be in God's word. I didn't realize how dead I was getting on the inside - I didn't even care about the music.

I'm glad God is able to pierce through to our heart and soul when we allow ourselves to become hardened by the cares of this world. Fortunately, He spoke to my heart this Sunday. I want to sing again, and I am so glad.

The AFI special is closing and what's the number one song? You guessed it - "Somewhere over the Rainbow". One of my personal favorites.

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Out of touch...

and I'm not even on vacation!

It's just been a really busy week. But they all seem to be here lately. I need to take some time off and slow things down. The crazy thing is, I don't really know what I spend my time doing! The only major things I've got going on in my life are work, church and family. No love interest, not a ton of friends I'm hanging out with (just my roommates and neighbors from time to time)...I don't know where my time is going!

Truth is, I've been letting a lot of things go in my life and I need to reign them back in. I just haven't had the "want to" to deal with them. *sigh* I'm working on it.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

A Real Man

It has been so interesting to hear the different things being said about this man. Regardless of what one might think about Ronald Reagan's politics, no one can deny that he was a charismatic man who impacted people's lives. Even in death, he is able to bring together multitudes of people from different socio-economic, racial, religious and political backgrounds. I can think of no other figure in the history of my 31 years on earth who has been able to do that. What a legacy!

Last night, I watched the ceremony as his casket was loaded onto the caisson and taken to the Rotunda at the Capitol. Earlier in the week, I wrote about how I wasn't able to cry about the death of Ronald Reagan. Well, I made up for it while I watched the procession on C-SPAN. As I sat there, crying my eyes out, I started thinking about what I was crying for. Of course, my heart is breaking for Nancy and the Reagan family and that was a part of my grief. But, I think the biggest reason was the simple fact that a true American Hero has died.

I can't think of anyone else in our country's leadership who possesses the characteristics of this man in the same abundance as he did. (Although, I do feel President Bush does exhibit some of the same qualities as Reagan.) To me, that is sad for our country. At the time Reagan was growing up in this great country, men like him were a dime a dozen. They were everywhere! Now, I do believe there are many people in this country who are great people and do great things in their community, but the truth is if there were more people with a heart and soul like Reagan - which stemmed from a deep faith in God - this country would be a different place. Yes, that's right - I do believe that Reagan's relationship with his Creator influenced every aspect of his life and especially his service to this country. I'm not saying he was perfect, but his deep faith obviously affected his outlook on life. It is simply not possible to have such an optimistic view of life without a secure knowledge of God.

America would do well to study the life of Ronald Reagan and learn from his example. I know I plan to. I have several books on his life and the letters he wrote to people. My goal is to read them within the next few months and try to learn more about this incredible man. He was a great example of a person who knew his core values and was unshakeable in his beliefs, yet - was able to deal with people whose own beliefs conflicted with his and not belittle or demean them.

Thank you, God, for giving us an incredible role model and blessing us with such a leader. May we strive to live up to the standard raised by Ronald Reagan.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

What a week!

It has been a busy week! Our Leadership Camp ended on Sunday - it was a wonderful camp (so I've been told!) I didn't actually go to the Leadership Camp because I had to be in the office to get ready for our Power Camp this week!

The Power Camp is a day camp for kids, age 7-12. Each day focuses on an aspect of the theme ("One Mission: Get it! Got it! Give it!" based on John 14:6) and a different sport (golf, football/cheerleading, baseball/softball, basketball, etc.) The kids are having a blast in spite of the incredible heat and humidity. It's so bad, that you sweat through all your clothes in about 10 minutes (or less!) Eeck!

But - it is so fun watching these kids. I am amazed at their energy!! Their daily schedule keeps them more than busy but even at the end of the day, they are still running like it's 8am. It's unbelievable! Needless to say, just being out there for the few hours each day I've been there is wearing me out! I can't even believe I'm still up at 11pm tonight. I'm really tired.

So, I guess I'll go ahead and get into bed.

Sunday, June 06, 2004

A REAL American Idol

I don't think enough can ever be said about how great a man Ronald Reagan was - a man of integrity, honesty, intelligence and a true, abiding faith in God. There are far too few leaders, and particularly men, who can be numbered among the ranks of men like Ronald Reagan. I hope that people will take time to learn of him as we mourn his passing. There is much to be learned from his life.

Yesterday, as I was listening to the news media discuss Ronald Reagan, I found myself wanting to cry - but I could not. How could I mourn for the Gipper when he is now in the presence of his Creator? As Ronald Reagan said of the Challenger Space Shuttle crew on the day they lost their lives, he too has "slipped the surly bonds of earth" to "touch the face of God.

I can just hear the conversation as he crossed through the Pearly Gates:
"Welcome to Heaven, Ronnie! We're so glad you're here!"

In that all too familiar "aw shucks" voice he replies, "Well....I'm glad to be here!"

The World has many reasons to be thankful for the life of Ronald Reagan.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Oh, how I wish....

I had a hot tub! I would jump in it when I get home. Yes, that's right, it's 9:35 pm, and I am still at the office.

Our Leadership Camp starts tomorrow morning and I am up here printing all the stuff we need for registration. It has taken 5 hours to print all the stuff I need. Of course, it wouldn't take so long if I wasn't working from our Home Office server (via Citrix), but that's my only option right now.

Needless to say, I am so tired!

Fortunately, all this toil and effort is for a good thing. There will be 150+ kids here and they will be learning how to impact their campus with the Good News of Jesus Christ, through their platform of athletics. I'm sure a few of them will come to know Christ this week and that's always worth any effort put forth.

If you're a pray-er, remember our camp: the campers, staff, speakers and even the staff of the college that is hosting our event.

God bless!

Monday, May 31, 2004

I forgot to mention....

Well, I didn't actually forget, I just didn't want to write about it.

I am no longer in the motorcycle ministry. There are several reasons why, but the most important reason I got out was because I do not have a motorcycle. One day, I really would like to have one, but it won't be soon. So, I didn't feel it was in keeping with a "motorcycle" ministry to be the secretary/treasurer and not have a bike. There weren't any hard feelings on anyone's part - they appreciated my service and understood my position - so I'm glad for that.

However, I sorely miss the fellowship. I really feel like something is missing in my life - and it is, to some extent. I will not be spending time with those people (whom I dearly love) like I once did. Oh sure, we are all still friends, but there is something about spending time with people on a consistent basis that makes life interesting. My life is now a little more's changed. I thought I was at a place in my life where change wasn't hard to deal with. I've had a lot of change in my life, so I thought I had a grasp on dealing with it - but, alas, I was wrong.

I think that's part of the reason for my funk over the past few weeks. I just didn't want to be around people. But things are getting better. I see God opening a new door in my life: becoming friends with my neighbors. Right now, I'm having to shake off the dust and sharpen my spiritual skills. I've always understood that you learn more about God and grow spiritually when you pour into the lives of others. I had sort of gotten out of that, but, once again - that's changing! God has allowed my path to cross with several people who need a true friend and more importantly, they need Him. I think He's placed me where I am for a reason. Now I'm seeking Him so that I can hear His voice when He speaks and respond with a willing heart. It's a little scary, but I am excited.

That's the other side of change - once you get past the hurt and sadness over what was, you can then look forward to what is and what will be. Time to roll up my sleeves and jump in with both feet!

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Dreams and Drama

A couple of weeks ago, I finally found a DVD version of a couple of my favorite movies: "Anne of Green Gables" and "Anne of Green Gables: The Sequel". I absolutely love the books, and the producers of these films have done a fabulous job of bringing the book to film. I first saw these films on PBS when I was about 10 or 12. I then started reading the books - the film was cut into 30 minute segments, so I didn't get to see the "end of the story"! After reading the books, I wanted my life to be like that.

I think what I like best about the story is the innocence and simplicity of life. Oh, how I wish life was really like that. My other favorite part of the story is the romance between Anne and Gilbert. *sigh* What a great love story! Anyway, since Saturday, I've watched both movies (a total of 7+ hours!) There is another movie, "Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story", which I don't have yet. I hope to get it soon!

So, last night, I finish watching the second movie and go outside to hang out with my roommate, Meagan, on the porch. Soon Dee Dee comes home and we're all hanging out when a huge disturbance breaks out at our neighbors house. Here is the story at it's most basic level: a girl, her boyfriend and another guy were living in the house next door. Girl and boyfriend break up last week - he comes back this week and first steals the dog, crashes into a fence down the street (tore up his truck!) and nearly runs into someone driving down the road (that all happened on Sunday night); last night he comes back to get more of his stuff (his dad brought him) he trashes the house, and gets into fight with ex-girlfriend and her brother. Well about the time the brawl is taking place on their front lawn, these guys in a car stop to watch and then flag down a cop car that was driving by. The cop turns around and acts like he's going to arrest the ex-boyfriend and girl's brother....but of course, the paperwork would be too much trouble so he lets them go. Evidently, the girl is going to press charges against ex-boyfriend (who happens to be on probation for something else) and he will go to jail anyway.

Needless to say, it was an interesting night and our neighbors are most assuredly interesting! I foresee many entertaining nights in the neighborhood this summer. We're supposed to be having a block party sometime in June. I can't wait! For all of our neighbor's quirks, they really are nice people and we (our neighborhood) are forming a bond that is very cool. Many of them don't know God or care about knowing least for now. :) I hope that the love of Christ will shine through me and touch them.

I truly believe this will be a summer like none I've ever had!

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

New Look

Thanks to for the new capabilities! I decided to take advantage of the new features they are providing and therein lies the reason for the new look. I really like it. Unfortunately, I haven't had time to dive into web design and CSS (cascading style sheets) like I really want to do. I want to be able to design my own day. :)

I hope to have my picture back up again soon. There is a problem with the blogger system (that hasn't been fixed yet, but they are working on it) that won't allow me to link to my picture on the ftp server.

Hope everyone has had a good week so far. My week started out rough, but today something happened that reminded me of just how much God cares for each of us.

As I was driving home this evening, a rain shower - a very heavy rain shower - set in. So, I'm driving along, talking on the phone to my mom when I notice this woman on the side of the road, standing under a flimsy umbrella trying not to get totally soaked by the rain. It wasn't working. I mean, it was pouring rain. Evidently, she was waiting for the city bus. It about broke my heart to see her like that, so the thought went through my head to turn around and offer her a ride home. Mind you, all of this is happening in mere seconds. Now, I'm on a four-lane road, one of the busiest in town, and I thought "there is no way I can get turned around...the traffic is too heavy." Just as the thought is finishing in my head, I look up and there is absolutely no traffic coming. Again...all within seconds. I turn my car around and pull into the parking lot where she was standing. By the time I've gotten to her, there is a man standing there with her too. What else could I do but offer the both of them a ride home? They hurriedly accepted my offer and jumped into the car. Both of them were drenched! I asked them where they lived and tell them I would be glad to take them home. They both lived on the other side of town!!!

As any of you who know me personally will tell, I don't usually meet a stranger. :) I began asking them questions about where they work, their family and if they attended church anywhere. It was a neat conversation. The woman, Cynthia, does attend church and she kept thanking God for his blessings. She's a really neat lady. The guy, Clifton, talked about how he wants to attend church and that he's visited around some, but he hasn't been in church for a while. He has some issues in his life, so I encouraged him to get involved in a good body of believers. We definitely need to be in fellowship with other believers so that we can learn from them and be encouraged in the faith.

Anyway, it was just an awesome experience. All of the things that happened for me to even notice Cynthia standing in the rain could only have happened because of God's hand. Through the whole experience, I was reminded of just how much God knows about each of our lives and how much He cares about what happens to us. Some people might consider this experience to be a coincidence, but I don't believe that for one second. I believe in Divine appointments and this was definitely one of those! How cool is that?

I can't wait to see what God has in store for me next!

Monday, May 17, 2004

Making Changes

As you can see, I've made some changes. To all my friends on my blogroll....I hope to have that back up soon. Just working through some kinks.

Please excuse the mess, but I hope to have it set right before too muich longer!

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Breaking through

I always hate when I let this happen. God starts opening doors in various ways, and I sort of shut down. I don't understand myself at times.

It has been a somewhat weird week (or two). I haven't been in God's Word like I should. That is a guaranteed way to start things at a disadvantage. The crazy thing is I know how much I need to be in God's Word right now. There are some new people in my life - neighbors where I live - who desperately need to know Jesus. They are really neat people and I like them a lot, but their lives are empty and they are searching for Someone to fill it (even though they don't know it). I know God has put me where I am for a purpose, and I want to fulfill that purpose. I also know that when God is moving, so is the enemy. Therefore - I need to be prepared. But have I been doing that? Oh no. Not me. I've just been coasting along. I don't know what I'm waiting for.

But...I can see the Light. I know I have to get up and shake the dust off and get busy. People's lives could depend on my preparedness. That is a scary thought. Perhaps that is what put me in neutral. The overwhelming realization that God wants to use me to impact people's lives. I'm only getting what I asked for.

You see, I work for a ministry and most, if not all, of my close friends are Christians. Up until last summer, I had been praying that God would put me in places where I could meet people who need to know Him. Well, He did! He moved me smack in the middle of a bunch of them! Now that He wants to get the ball rolling, I practically shut down. Arrgggh! I get so frustrated with myself!

I'm just so glad God is patient with me. I hope I will reflect His patience when dealing with people who need to experience it for themselves.