Day 358

When I was in 5th grade a group of cheerleaders from the high school I would eventually attend came to my elementary school.  Dressed in their uniforms, complete with red striped Asic tennis shoes, they did a cheer in our cafeteria and talked about how much fun it was to be on the cheerleading squad.  They handed out fliers with information about 6th grade cheer tryouts.  I was mesmerized.  I didn’t know anything about cheerleading, but I wanted to give it a shot.  I tried out that year with girls from all over my 6A school district and I made it!  I loved everything about it.  The friends, the ribbons, the pom poms, the uniforms, and the fun.  But each year the dreaded try out week would roll around agains and each year the squads got smaller and smaller.  In 6th grade close to 50 girls made the cut, but in 9th grade only 16 girls made it.  We had the best varsity squad in the nation when I was in 8th grade.  I was there at Disney World when they competed for the title and won first place, so it was very competitive.

I couldn’t wait to be on the varsity squad… Friday night football at the big stadium, going to the elementary schools to recruit future cheerleaders, Disney World trips, going to state with the football team… varsity was a big deal, but I never made it past JV.  At the end of my 10th grade year I tried out and didn’t make the cut.  I was beyond crushed.  I had one of those shirts that said “Cheerleading Is Life… the rest is just details” and it wasn’t far from the truth, so I was pretty much devestated.

My whole family knew how much I loved being a cheerleader and they knew how important the varsity tryouts were to me, so I had a lot of prayer going into that week.  When my Grandma Wagner heard the news she said to my mom, “Well, I haven’t been praying that Sarah would make the squad, I’ve been praying that God’s Will would be done in her life.  He must have other plans for her.”  My mom shared that with me and I’ve never forgotten it.

I remember thinking to myself, “Hmmm.  That’s interesting.  Maybe Grandma has the right idea.”  Maybe my “help me make the squad” prayer wasn’t what I should have been praying, because I didn’t even know if making the squad was part of His will for my life because I had never taken the time to ask Him about it.  I wish I would have.  I know He would have told me I wasn’t going to make it and not to even bother trying out.  I could have saved myself a lot of heartache and embarassment, but nevertheless I learned a great lesson through all of that high school drama; His will should always be top priority when I pray.

Matthew 6:9-10 In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done. On earth as it is in heaven.

There are certain things in the Bible that we know without a doubt are His will.  Salvation, healing, peace, forgiveness, joy, etc., but then there are things like, should I buy this house or that house, should I take this job or that job, should I go to this university or that one, that we can’t look up scriptures on to find the exact answer we need.  There was nothing in the old or new testament about the varsity cheerleading squad, but my Grandma knew the Lord’s prayer and she knew that the best thing she could pray for me was that God’s will would be done in my life, and it was.

I ended up graduating a year early and getting married the very next year; something that never would have happened if I had made varsity.  I’m glad God doesn’t answer all of our prayers, because sometimes we pray the wrong ones.

Your will, will disapoint you.  His will, will not, so when you come before God in prayer, let Him know that what you value most is HIS will being perfected in your life.

  1. His will!
  2. Unanswered prayers.
  3. My praying Grandma.
  4. I got to graduate in 2002 instead of 2003.
  5. I got to get married in 2003!
  6. Cheerleading is what gave me the extra credits I needed to be able to graduate early.
  7. Breakfast in bed!
  8. Gus turned the tent Josh made them a few days ago into the Bat Cave.  I love watching his imagination run wild.
  9. Got to see Sunny at the 20 week anatomy scan today and the doctor said she looks great!
  10. Ultrasound technology.  It really is so neat to be able to see what’s she is up to in there.
  11. Got to put some pictures of the scan on a flash drive, not sure what most of them are, but I did get a few of her pretty face!
  12. Her sweet little hands that were moving around a lot next to her sweet little mouth.
  13. Gus & Beau came with us today and Gus really liked getting to his little sisters face in black and white.
  14. Had such a peaceful day today.  No fear at all going into the check up.
  15. Bubble Guppies coloring pages.  They kept the kids busy while we were waiting.
  16. My doctor never keeps us waiting long!  When I was pregnant with Beau and Felix I had to wait 45 minutes to an hour every single visit.
  17. I’m well on my way to my New Year’s Resolution of gaining 35 pounds by the end of this year!!  Praise God for my healthy, growing girl!
  18. My cousin in law Jordan is celebrating his birthday today!  He’s one cool dude!
  19. My pastor, Robert Morris, is celebrating his birthday today!!
  20. Brandon Anderson is celebrating his birthday today.  A faithful friend and a faithful ministry partner.
  21. Brandon helped us redo our bathroom at our old house in Tulsa.  He did a beautiful job and didn’t charge us a dime for his time.
  22. Beau saw 10 minutes of Bobby Flay on Food Network which inspired her to get our her little kitchen and pretend to cook for the next 45 minutes.  She had so much fun using some of my real kitchen whisks, measuring cups, and colanders.
  23. The kids got to run around in the backyard while I cleaned and Josh mowed.  They came in with pink faces, smelling like wet dogs, and smiling from ear to ear.
  24. Mexican hoagies for dinner.  Not as good as my mom’s used to be, but still tasty.
  25. Unexpected check in the mail!
  26. Got my hair washed and dried this morning so I wouldn’t have to do that and pack for Tulsa all in the same night.
  27. 358 posts written, 7 to go!!

Day 357

Today, my little brother Zachary turns 26!  I was thinking about him this morning… about how fast time goes and about how thankful I am that we got to grow up together.  It doesn’t seem like that long ago that we were walking to school together every morning after watching “Rugrats” or that I was cheering for him at one of his little league baseball games.  But, he’s no longer the little guy sporting a Jurassic Park baseball cap, Boever’s Elementary t-shirt, Texas Ranger shorts, tall socks and big tennis shoes.  Now, he’s happily married with a sweet little one and half year old daughter teaching history at the school I graduated from.  While reminiscing about the past this morning and thinking about Zach I had a flash back of the time he fell from a tree about 9 feet.

Our older Michael decided to build us this awesome tree house in the backyard and by awesome I mean one piece of ply wood placed between two branches so that we could stand on it.  It was nothing you would see on “Treehouse Masters”, it technically wasn’t even a house, but we thought it was awesome.  Michael then got another awesome idea.  He decided to get a rope and tie it to something across the yard and then take the other end of the rope and tie it up in our “tree house” to a branch, add a sturdy cylinder tube and we had ourselves a zip line.

I was in the back yard playing when the zip line buzz started.  Zachary was probably 7 or 8 and he couldn’t wait to try it.  When Michael had it just about ready he called Zach up to the treehouse.  I could hear Michael telling him to just stand still for a second, but Zach was too excited to hear.  He grabbed onto the sturdy cylinder tube and stepped off the tree house board.  He fell straight to the ground.  Michael hadn’t  secured the end of the rope to the branch in the tree yet and Zach and his little tailbone were now very aware of that.  Everyone in the neighborhood was now very aware of that.  Zach was crying, my mom came rushing outside, and the treehouse and zip line were never seen again.  I think Mike got in pretty big trouble over that, I’ll admit, it wasn’t the brightest idea, but he wasn’t trying to create something that would hurt us, he was trying to create something fun for us, Zach just jumped the gun.

Hebrews 10:36 (AMP) For you have need of steadfast patience and endurance, so that you may perform and fully accomplish the will of God, and thus receive and carry away [and enjoy to the full] what is promised.

Zach never got to perform and fully accomplish the will of our big brother’s zip line idea because he was lacking patience!  We probably could have zip lined like 10 or 15 times before our mom realized what we were doing and made us take it down, but that didn’t happen.  No one got to enjoy the promised tree house zip line to the full.

I think sometimes we can act like an 8 year old little boy when it comes to God’s will.  We get excited and eager to do what it is that He has planned for us to do, so excited that we can’t hear His voice telling us to hold on just a second while He makes sure everything is in place for us.  We know what He is calling us to do, but we don’t feel like waiting around with steadfast patience and endurance while He’s tying up loose ends for us, so we  jump out in front of Him and we fall.

If we want to fully accomplish God’s will we have to fully rely on His timing and wait patiently for Him to give us the all clear.

I know for me, once I get a glimpse of the awesome things that He has planned for my future, it’s hard to stand still.  I want to grab onto a  cylinder tube and zip into His promises, but I know I won’t get to enjoy those things to the full if I can’t practice patience.  Be excited about what God has in store for you, but don’t let that excitement hinder your ability to hear God’s voice.  If you wan to receive and carry away what He’s promised you, you are going to have to learn how to be faithful while you are waiting for the red lights to turn green.

Hebrews 12:1 (AMP) …and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us

  1. God ties up all the loose ends!
  2. If we wait patiently we will receive and carry away and enjoy to the full what is promised.
  3. We can run and be patient all at the same time.
  4. God has good things in store for all of His children.
  5. 26 years ago today my little brother Zachary was born!
  6. I had a really great childhood and Zach played a huge part in that.
  7. Rugrats and Hey Arnold!  Some of favorite shows.
  8. Little league baseball.
  9. Space Jam & Angels In The Outfield.  Some of our favorite movies.
  10. Zach didn’t get seriously injured the day he fell out of the tree.
  11. I have a big brother and a little brother.  I hope Beau and Sunny have the same set up!  Every girl needs a big brother that looks after her and a little brother that she looks after.
  12. Michael was always thinking of ways to invent more fun.  It really is a miracle none of us kids ever had broken bones.
  13. Boevers Elementary.   Loved going to school there.  K-5!
  14. Zach is happily married to his high school sweet heart, Tosha!  So thankful God brought her back into his life.
  15. Ava Sophia!  My cute little niece.  It’s pretty cool seeing Zach as a dad.
  16. 17 years ago today my nephew Colton was born!!
  17. I have had the song we sang in the four year old class stuck in my head all day, but what a great reminder that God’s plans for us our good!
  18. Sweet quiet time out in my back yard on a lovely summer morning.
  19. Sunday afternoon nap!
  20. String cheese.  My new favorite pregnancy snack.
  21. Watching Beau pretend to be me.
  22. Josh grilled some awesome chicken sandwiches for dinner.
  23. Hanging out with Josh and being entertained by the Food Network this evening.
  24. Sunny was moving so big tonight.  I even saw my tummy move from the outside a few times.
  25. Josh’s “day at the office” was teaching kids about their God given destinies!
  26. Home movies.  I watched a few of me when I was Beau’s age tonight.  It’s so fun to see the similarities in the two of us.
  27. Get to see Sunny via ultrasound tomorrow!!

Day 356

In Galatians 4 Paul writes to the Galatians to let them know that he is concerned about them and their walk with God.  He feels like he’s going through labor pains with them all over again.  The first time he went through the laboring process for them it was more like a miscarriage because Jesus wasn’t fully formed in them, and Paul doesn’t want that to happen again.  He let’s them know He will labor for them until Christ is fully formed in their lives, and then in verse 20 he writes something that totally captured my attention this morning,  I wish I were with you right now so I could change my tone. But at this distance I don’t know how else to help you.

Paul wished he could address the Galatians face to face so that he had the option to change his tone.  He knew they wouldn’t be able to pick up on his emotions correctly just by reading the words he had written.  Instead of concerned, they might of thought he was angry.  They might have mistaken his love for them as disappointment in them.  He may have wanted to convey a since of urgency and seriousness, but it’s not easy to pick up on how serious someone is without hearing their voice.   If he could see the people and they could see his facial expressions and hear the sweetness or the concern or the anger behind his voice, they might understand his heart better, but he didn’t know how else to help them, so he went with the letter.

We all have people in our lives that are close to us.   People that live under the same roof as us, people that work in the same office space as we do, people that we come into contact with pretty much every day of the week.  There is not a great distance between us and them and so we, unlike Paul, have the luxury of changing our tone.  We have the option to express our hearts through the tone of our voices.  We can look into the faces of the people we are closest too and decide which tone we need to use as we address them… which tone will minister to them most effectively.

This morning in my quiet time I prayed that God would help me to set the tone for my home today.  That He would use me to see to it that my family would wake up to a wonderful morning filled with His presence, because in his presence is fullness of joy.  To set a tone, you have to watch your tone.  If you want the presence of God to continue to linger after your quiet time is over you have to guard it.  You have to watch what you say and how you say it.

You can set the tone for yourself and for the people that you are in close proximity with just by being more mindful of how you speak.  The sweeter I am to my kids the sweeter they are to me.  If I make a point to speak kind words to my husband throughout the day, the vibe between the two of us is going to be a good one.  If I join in with people who are griping and complaining, the wonderful presence of God is going to become a lot harder to pick up on.

Paul wished he could change the tone of his voice, you don’t have to wish that.  You are not in a long distance relationship with the people you come into contact with everyday.  Set the tone for yourself by waking up each day and getting into God’s presence and then use your voice to set the tone or to change the tone if it needs to changed for the people that you do life with.

  1. In His presence is fullness of joy.
  2. I can set the tone or change the tone with my voice.
  3. That one little verse really changed the way I went about my day.
  4. I get to do life with my favorite people in all of the world.
  5. Gus came out of his room first thing this morning fully decked in his batman costume.  He was setting a tone for sure.
  6. Got some good Bible reading in last night when I woke up wide awake at 2 a.m.
  7. Bills paid!
  8. Have yet to pay anything for all of my pregnancy check ups and ultrasounds.
  9. Josh took the kids to run errands with him this morning so I could have a few hours of alone time.
  10. Enjoyed getting dinner ready and in the crock pot and listening to a great message servanthood.
  11. Gus is doing great two days into his 7 day break from video games.  I am really proud of him!
  12. Gus loves books.  He spent a good 45 minutes just looking through some of his favorite picture books this afternoon.
  13. Pastor Robert is back in the pulpit!
  14. Feeling Sunny move around during the message.
  15. Great, challenging message tonight.
  16. Wonderful worship.
  17. Over 100 kids got saved at Wacky Week.
  18. The hilarious conversation I had with Gus on the way home from church about what kind of girl he wants to marry.
  19. Mikayla Corbo.  Gus’ first crush!  Too bad she’s 13 years older than him and taken, but he knows how to pick em.  She’s beautiful inside and out, so cute to me that he’s picked up on that.
  20. Kids both had a great night at church and were so full of joy for the rest of the night.
  21. My friends John & Dana had their little boy Frankie this morning!  Loved waking up to see his cute little face on Facebook.
  22. So many of my friends on FB have newborn babies.  Seeing all the pictures of them makes me so excited about Sunny!  Newborns are so fun!
  23. My first attempt at BBQ ribs was a success!
  24. Tried a new cucumber salad recipe and it was a hit.
  25. My healthy, growing boy who is all of a sudden too tall for his church pants.
  26. Josh found a shirt he really liked yesterday and last night when he was hanging it up he realized he got the wrong size, went to take it back and was able to exchange it the size he needed.
  27. Beau is in a contant state of skip, hop, or bounce.

Day 355

Here is another question from a 10kreasons reader that I have been meaning to answer for months but just haven’t had a chance to.

“I enjoy waking up to read your blog and am always like, I want that. I want the knowledge and understanding of these scriptures like you have.  I have to ask what are you doing differently? I’m reading through the whole bible with my church. So I am reading it, but it’s like reading a foreign language so it never really clicks for me. Any advice would be very much appreciated.”

I’ve totally been there before.  I have always been a good Christian girl that reads her Bible and has scriptures memorized and there were even certain scriptures and passages in the Bible that I had some great revelation on, but before I started to read and study to write for this blog the Bible was mostly just the book I read every night before bed because I knew it was good for me.

I would highlight favorite scriptures, but I never went beyond that.  A highlighted scripture is great and all, but what I’ve learned over the past year is that if I want that scripture to stand out in my life and not just on the pages of my Bible I have to meditate on it and to do that I had to change my whole Bible reading routine.  Instead of reading at night when I was absolutely exhausted I started to get up and read in the morning.

I set my alarm for 6:00 a.m. to ensure myself plenty of time to get in the word before my two early risers wake up and when it goes off I pour myself some orange juice, spend some time in worship, some time in prayer and then I ask God to speak to me as I open up His word.  I usually read and study for 30 minutes.  I don’t follow a Bible reading plan, because I don’t feel like I absorb as much when I am trying to read a certain number of chapters each day, I simply rely on the spirt of God to lead me to a chapter, a book, a story, or a verse that He would like to share with me that day.  If you are quiet for a few minutes you will usually hear a still small voice showing you where to get started.  For instance, you might think of the word “angels” and then you can spend your morning looking up scriptures about angels.  Or you may think about a verse you saw someone post on Facebook and feel led to study that.  I just read wherever the spirit takes me.

Once I begin to read if a verse stands out to me I dig into it.  I use the Blue Letter Bible app, which is free to download on your tablet or smart phone, to do my digging.  Within the app you can type in a scripture reference and then find commentaries on that scripture, find other scriptures that relate to it, compare it in several different translations, look up the original Greek and Hebrew word meanings in the concordance, and get Biblical definitions of the words in the verse.  It is an awesome all in one study tool!  I also love biblehub.com, where you can search your scripture reference and view more commentaries and related scriptures.

After my 30 minutes is up that doesn’t mean that my time meditating on what I’ve studied is up.  I continue to think on it and let it roll around in my head for the rest of the day.  I chew on it and chew on it and chew on it until I get revelation of it.  God will show me a picture or use my kids or something that happens in my day to reveal His word in a way so that I will always remember it.  Revelation you get for yourself is always more memorable than revelation you get from a pastor, teacher, friend, or writer, because you have to put more work into getting that revelation.

Once I receive a revelation and I get what God wanted me to get I write it down.  I have retained so much more of what I’ve studied over the last year than I have in all of the other years I’ve ever studied combined and I know it’s because I took time to write about it.  Get a notebook or open up a word doc and put to paper what God put in your heart.  Also, share what God reveled to you with someone else.  Your kids, your small group, your spouse, a friend, your mom, or whoever will listen.  Explaining to someone else what God has explained to you will also help that revelation and understanding to stick.  You may get even more revelation as you are explaining it.

Most importantly, you just gotta practice.

Hebrews 5:13–14 (VOICE) No one who lives on milk alone can know the ins and outs of what it means to be righteous and pursue justice; that’s because he is only a baby.  But solid food is for those who have come of age, for those who have learned through practice to distinguish good from evil.

“Milk is what you get from someone else, like a baby from its mother. Meat is what you get when you hunt.” – Bill Johnson

If you want to get some meat when you study the scriptures, you’ve gotta commit to the hunt and when you commit to the hunt God will begin to open the eyes of your understanding like never before.  The Bible will become your favorite book instead of one that seems like it’s written in a foreign language.

  1. The Bible is full of good meat!
  2. When we commit to the hunt God opens the eyes of our understanding.
  3. Blue Letter Bible app.
  4. Biblehub.com
  5. Biblegateway.com
  6. You Version app
  7. David Guzik, Matthew Henry, Gills Exposition, Jamieson-Fausset-Brown, Vines, Spurgeon.  Learned so much by reading commentaries and sermons from those great resources.
  8. I’ve learned how to chew and chew and chew until I get revelation.
  9. I have all that God showed me over the last year in writing and will be able reference back to it for the rest of my life and I can share it with my kids and grandkids.
  10. Awesome, rainy, and sleepy sabbath day morning.
  11. The kids had so much fun playing with Josh in the tent that he built them.  He is a way better tent builder than I am.
  12. Loved just being at home and being lazy and letting the kids play and make a huge mess with tons of their toys while I watched from the couch.
  13. Listed some items I’ve been wanting to list on e-bay this afternoon.
  14. Took a great nap on the couch.
  15. I can sleep hard!  Josh said I slept through all kinds of army men noises coming from Gus who was playing just a few inches away from me.
  16. “Turbo” movie afternoon!  Super cute movie.  Both of the kids loved it.
  17. Beau has become a movie going pro this summer.  She’s been to 4 already and she’s done great at all of them.
  18. Good batch of Sour Patch Kids!
  19. 40% off sale items at Gap.
  20. Found a perfect “little sunshine” onesie for Sunny!  It’s going in the hospital bag for sure.  Can’t wait to see her in it.
  21. Got a cute new maternity shirt!
  22. Got Beau and Sunny some great little shorts for next summer and they were super, super cheap.
  23. Beau will just bust some moves in the middle of a store if a good song comes on.  “Moves Like Jagger” was doing it for her while we were at The Gap.
  24. PB&Js for dinner courtesy of Josh.
  25. The strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries we got at the grocery store this week are extra delicious.
  26. “Heavy Weights” movie night with Josh.  I loved that movie when I was 10 and it was still pretty awesome at 28.
  27. Stayed up late to spend some more time hanging out with my very favorite.  Making the most of the short weekend!

Day 354

Yesterday, I received an e-mail from a 10kreasons reader named Donna who said she was “struck” by the idea of being thankful for 27 things each day, but she was wondering if she could do it.  Could she stay consistent?  Could she think of new things to list each day?  She said she wasn’t sure, but she was going to try.

With 353 days and 9,676 reasons under my belt, I thought I would offer her, and anyone else out there who has thought about making their own daily thank you lists some advice and some motivation.

As most of you know, the idea for this blog came about one night when I was chopping an onion in my kitchen and thinking about what we had been through a month earlier.  I could see us in the hospital room waiting to deliver our son still born and I could hear us singing “10,000 Reasons” by Matt Redman.  I remembered the day we got home from the hospital, that song still playing in my head, telling my husband that if we sat down and made a list we probably could come up with 10,000 Reasons to praise and thank God for.  As I was recalling all of those moments I grew curious as to how many things you would have to be thankful for each day for an entire year to reach 10,000 Reasons.  I sat down my chopping knife, washed my hands, and did the math on my iPhone.  The answer was 27.39.  I immediately felt challenged by the Holy Spirit to do that.  To list 27 things every day for 365 days.  So I went for it and it has forever changed my life.

The mindset I had to take on knowing that at the end of the day I was going to have to list out 27 things I was thankful for changed the way I looked at life.  I knew I had to be focused on the good things, big and small instead of negative things.  I was more attentive and more present in every moment because I was searching in every moment for something list worthy.  Instead of being tempted to gripe and complain when a flight was delayed or while I was waiting at the doctor’s office with a ridiculously sore throat I was busy searching for God’s goodness.  I can honestly say, that since I started listing, I’ve never had a bad day!  It’s impossible to have a bad day when you spend so much of your time thinking about all that you have to be thankful for.  Motivated?  Good!  Now, for the advice part.

Ask God for your number.  My number was 27 for 365 days, but He might want to start you off listing 10 things a day, or 15, or 5, or 3!  He might want you to list for a month, 6 months, or an entire year.  If God hadn’t spoken to me specifically about 10,000 reasons I would have given up long ago, but it was an assignment from Him, so I knew I could do it.

List every night or every morning.  Have a special notebook or a place you can list on your phone or computer that you can pick up and write in every night before bed or every morning before you get out bed, no matter how tired, how sick, or how unmotivated you may be.  You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel after making the decision to end your evening or start your day by writing down some things that you are thankful for.

Makes notes throughout the day.  Early on I noticed that if I didn’t make a note on my phone about a certain moment I was thankful for, that I might forget about it by the end of the night.

Share your list with someone.  Sharing my lists every day with all of you kept me accountable.  I made my mission public and there was no way I was backing out after that.  Tell your spouse or your sister or your closest friend that you are listing however many things over however many days and ask them if you can email or read your lists to them every day once they are complete.

Be creative, but don’t be afraid to list the same things more than once.  I am thankful for my kids every day, but instead of just writing their names down and leaving it at that, I try to write something about them specific to that day, a special moment I got to share with them that made me feel beyond blessed to be their mother.

I know there is something special to this listing thing.  I know that God was looking for ways to make my list each day, and I know if you start your own list He will be looking for ways to make yours too.  I’m not sure who said it, but I love this quote, “It is not happy people who are thankful; it is thankful people who are happy.”

If you want everyday to be a happy day, a joyful day, a good day, then make everyday a thankful day!

  1. 353 days of listing.
  2. 353 good days!
  3. I have formed a healthy, healthy habit of being extra aware of the goodness of God.
  4. God gave me an assignment and then gave me the grace I needed to complete it… almost.  11 days to go!!
  5. Beautiful sunrise this morning.  The pinks and blues looked like the perfect nursery colors.
  6. I was so impressed with the pretty sky I did my Bible time outside and it was lovely.
  7. Praying for Sunny this morning and right when I laid my hand on my tummy she started moving around.  She’s already so sweet!!
  8. Fridge and pantry are full!
  9. Realized I didn’t have my phone after I got in the car to head home from Target, went back in and found it pretty quickly.  It was lying on the kiwi’s.
  10. Got a front row parking spot.  Which was extra nice since I had to go in and go out twice!
  11. Overcast skies kept the temperatures down.
  12. Started my 20th week of pregnancy!!!
  13. 20 weeks left to go!!!
  14. Very productive work afternoon.
  15. Last day of Wacky Week was a success.
  16. Wacky Week is over!!  Ready to have my husband home all day tomorrow!!
  17. Beau got to take some of the balloon decorations home with her.
  18. The fine people at Taco Bueno made dinner for me and the kids tonight.
  19. Gus and Beau got home tonight and started pretending Wacky Week.  Gus got his microphone out and kept telling us to scream if we were having fun.  He was the MC, the band, the drama team, and the teacher.
  20. Found a great little bag of army men at the dollar spot today.
  21. Teresa & Becca gave me their maternity clothes last year!  Wearing one of their dresses today!
  22. 94.9 was playing Christmas music today.  It’s impossible to hear Jingle Bell Rock and not smile.
  23. 5 months til Christmas!!
  24. We are going to have a new stocking to hang this Christmas.
  25. Josh got home a lot earlier than I thought he was going to get home.  Tear down of Wacky Week goes by way faster than set up!
  26. Got to listen to Steven Furtick’s “Sun Stand Still Message.”  Good stuff.
  27. In bed by 10:00!  Looking forward to a good nights rest!

Day 353

An important part of eating healthy is portion control.  If you are trying to lose or maintain your weight it’s going to be much easier if you are aware of how big a serving size is and how many calories are in that serving size.  You’ll have way more success if you snack on a pre portioned 100 calorie packs of chips instead of eating directly out of a family sized bag.  People have made big bucks on portion control plates, which have specifically marked spots for fruits and vegetables, starches, and protein.  Each spot on the plate follows the My Pyramid serving size guidelines.  Fast food restaurants however, have made big bucks serving combo meals that don’t follow those guidelines at all.  Just the other day I ordered medium french fries from Wendy’s and could not believe how large they were.  They seemed super sized to me, or I guess at Wendy’s it’s would be referred to as “biggie sized”, so I shared them with my husband. I’m sure much of the weight problem facing our country today can be traced back to portion distortion!

Deuteronomy 32:9 (AMP) For the Lord’s portion is His people;…

We are the Lord’s portion.  We are His inheritance.  We are the one thing in this fallen world that has been redeemed, nothing else is worthy enough to be His portion, and we wouldn’t be either except by the shed blood of Jesus Christ that washed us white as snow!  He could have made gold his portion or diamonds, or angels, but what He has His heart set on are the human beings He created in His image.

What an honor, a privilege, and a big responsibility it is to be the creator of the universe’s portion!  It’s important to be mindful of that truth, because if we aren’t we will suffer from portion distortion.

When it comes to portions of food, it’s better to go with a small size instead of a super size, but when it comes to God’s portion of us it’s always better to super size.  He wants more than just a palm sized portion of His portion!  He wants more than a few servings of you a week.  He’s not interested in sharing a spot with other people or things in your heart.  He’s doesn’t want you to structure your spiritual life with a portion control plate that tells you if you pray twice a day, go to church once a week, and pay your tithes every two weeks that He will be satisfied.   He wants ALL of you for ALL of your life.

Luke 10:27 …You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind…

Your love for Jesus should not be controlled!  You can never give Him too much of you!  He chose you as His portion, because He cares about and loves you more than anything else in all of creation.  He set you apart for His reward so indulge Him everyday by living your life to bring Him glory.  Throw portion control out the window!  Strive for more of God in your life, and strive to give Him more of you!

  1. For the Lord’s portion is His people… I am His portion!
  2. I have been redeemed and made worthy to be the Lord’s portion.  Thank you Jesus!
  3. HE can’t get enough of ME!
  4. He is my portion!
  5. Family breakfast at McDonalds.
  6. The cooler overcast morning.
  7. Beau was so excited to get to spend some time with her daddy.
  8. Gus & Beau made some new friends and played Ninja Turtles with them in the play place until it was time to go home.
  9. The upstairs shower.  I feel like I’m at a hotel when I use it.
  10. Really bad storms blew threw Tulsa yesterday and a huge tree came down on my oldest sister’s house.  So thankful she was protected.
  11. Reading our latest Highlights magazine this morning with Gus on one side, Beau on the other, Sunny in the middle.
  12. Got an extra blog written this afternoon.
  13. Gus looked so cute in his big blue Wacky Week shirt.
  14. Wacky Week day 2 was even better than the first day.  He had so much fun and wasn’t as overwhelmed with all the awesome activities.
  15. I got to sit in on the service and it was powerful.
  16. Got to see the David & Goliath cartoon that Josh wrote.  It was so great!
  17. Pastor Josh Hall’s testimony about how God healed his arm when he was little.  Couldn’t wait to share that with Gus.
  18. Hundreds of little voices singing “Whom Shall I Fear.”  I could not hold back the tears.
  19. Beau sat through the service with me and did a really good job of being quiet and sitting still.
  20. Great dinner at Kenny’s with some of the children’s ministry team.
  21. Beau’s fake laugh she does when all of the adults are laughing and she doesn’t know what they are laughing at.
  22. Both of the kids were tired going into dinner and they both behaved so well.  Little troopers.
  23. My friend Jamie emailed me to let me know Gus did great today in her group at Wacky Week.  So nice to hear!
  24. My childhood friend Maria is celebrating her birthday today.  We had some fun times, took some awesome pictures together at Moto Photo, made some classic school projects together and she has one of the best laughs of anyone ever.
  25. My friends Sayra & Clint are celebrating 14 years of marriage today!
  26. Josh helped me put away all the clean clothes and vacuum the rug.
  27. Hearing Gus sing little songs that got stuck in his head today at Wacky Week.

Day 352

Take 12 junior high cheerleaders, 1 cheer mom who wants be the “cool” mom, a Friday night in Tulsa, and a trip to the grocery store after midnight and what do you get?  If you are junior high boy who happens to live nearby you get toilet papered.  You get to wake up early on Saturday morning and clean up your front yard which has been covered in the cheapest T.P. available for purchase.  Plus you get griped at by your parents for something you didn’t do!  Ahhh, the joys of being a junior high boy.  I realize now that someday my boy will be in junior hight and because I sowed bad TP-ing seed, I’m sure one morning I’ll be waking him up and telling him to get dressed, grab a trash bag, and start cleaning up after the girls at school who think he’s cute and decided to let him know with toilet paper.

In Genesis 26 Isaac is dealing with some annoying neighbors.  Much more annoying than teenage girls with rolls of 2-ply.  He had successfully harvested 100 times more grain than what he had planted and he became rich.  He was rolling in wealth, sheep, and cattle.  The Philistines that lived nearby were jealous of him and his success, they wanted to do something to mess with him.  They didn’t put pink flamingos in his yard or throw eggs at his tent, instead they filled all of his wells with dirt.  This was a pretty big offense.  Wells produced clean drinking water and without clean drinking water Isaac could not survive.  If that wasn’t enough to spoil Isaac’s Saturday morning the Philistine king told Isaac he needed to move, to go somewhere else, because he had become too wealthy and too powerful.

So Isaac packed up all of his wealth, sheep and cattle and moved to a valley and the first thing he had his servants do was dig wells.  They found a great fresh water spring while they were digging that they were pretty excited about, but some shepherds that lived nearby claimed it for themselves.  They argued over it with Isaac’s servants until they won.  Isaac named the well, argument and moved on.

The servants dug another well, and they got into another argument.  Isaac named that well, hostility.  He was not having a whole lot of luck with this well thing.  Finally, in Genesis 26:22 he get it’s right.

Abandoning that one, Isaac moved on and dug another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth (which means “open space”), for he said, “At last theLord has created enough space for us to prosper in this land.”

Isaac had to move on.  He had to leave behind arguing and hostility to get to the wide open spaces that God had set aside for him to prosper in.  If the shepherds had not opposed Isaac and argued with him about the first well, he probably would have tried to settle there, but it wasn’t where God wanted him to settle.  Again, with the second well.  If he wouldn’t have faced any hostility he would have had no reason to move on.

After the “open space” well had been dug Isaac settled in Beersheba and the Lord appeared to him and let him know that He was with him and that He would bless him.  And He did.  More and more wells were added to Isaac because God provided, just as He had promised.

God used conflict and hostility to get Isaac where he needed to be, and He will do the same for us.  He wants every situation in our lives to be a win-win.  He will take a hostile situation and use it to get you to move on so you can be right smack dab in the middle of His will.  Don’t let confrontation do what what the devil designed it to do- discourage you, get you off track, or get you to give up- let it do the opposite.  Let it inspire you to move forward into a wide open space where you and your family can prosper like never before.

  1. God will use arguments and hostility to move us into open spaces!
  2. Studying this today made me think about how many times God has used conflict to move our family forward.
  3. God was with Isaac and promised to bless Him, God is with us and has promised to bless us!
  4. My mom never tried to be the “cool” mom.
  5. Slept great last night.
  6. Got to get back in bed in cuddle with Josh for a few minutes before the kids came and took over.
  7. Gus got to go to Wacky Week, our churches incredible version of VBS, for the first time today.
  8. The church was completely decked out in awesome candy decorations.  Very impressive!
  9. All of the volunteers that served today.  No way we could do an event like this without lots of helpers.
  10. Got to chat with lots of great ladies today in between dropping off and picking up the kids.
  11. I got to take a little nap today while Beau was napping.
  12. Beau felt like she got to be apart of Wacky Week because she got to walk around and see all the cool decorations.  Her mind was blown!
  13. Gus had an overwhelming, yet fun first day.  I loved hearing him talk about what songs they sang and that he learned about praying.
  14. My friend Sayra was there looking out for Gussy and he got to be in the group as his best buddy Alex!
  15. He got a new Wacky Week shirt that he can’t wait to wear tomorrow.  He wanted to sleep in it tonight.
  16. Josh helped Gus win a prize from the claw machine.  It totally made his day.
  17. The claw picked up two toys, so Beau got a little stuffed toy too!
  18. Hot & Ready Little Caesars for dinner.  Too hot to cook!
  19. Pastor Jan sent me some contact info so after the blog is finished I can get in touch with someone who can guide me down the path to writing a book!
  20. Our back yard is perfectly shaded by the house so the kids can play after dinner without it being unbearable.
  21. The option to send them outside and let them run wild, knowing they are safe and fenced in.
  22. My husband looks cute in skinny jeans.
  23. Gus wrote a new praise song.  “Jesus Will Help You!”  I love when he tells me he’s got a new song.
  24. My FB friend Krista had her little boy Gabriel today!
  25. Josh got home just in time to kiss the kids and tuck them in for the night.
  26. Pastor Jim Jarman.  He is one of the nicest people on the planet.
  27. Rainier cherries.