Monday, September 27, 2010

Breaking Free

About two years ago, I was at a women's conference in Carbondale with some other women from church. While we were there, I got a very vivid image of a woman, arms wide open, praising Jesus...with a pile of junk and baggage at her feet. The words I got were "Breaking Free". I really felt strongly that this was for the women of our church. I was so excited. How could we get the women on board? A women's conference? Yes! In my naivete, I felt sure this was the way to go. Well, sometimes I get ahead of God just a little bit. Because that wasn't what happened.

Yet, that vision has stuck with me strongly over the past two years. In the last two years, I've had the opportunity to pray with countless women for this very thing. Breaking off of baggage: sins, lies, abuse, self-image, unforgiveness, etc. I've watched God work and seen women free from the stuff that has plagued them for years, sometimes decades.

Tonight, we were praying for a woman for this very thing. After God had indeed freed her from the things satan had been attacking her with...the picture of her walking in a field, towards Jesus, with piles of her brokeness left behind came to me. I thought "Yes, God. I get it now. You are doing it. THANK YOU!"

Thank you God for loving us so much that you never want us to stay in our brokeness. Your heart is for us to be free. Free to love you. Free to be the woman that you have made us to be. Free. In your freedom, I will live. Thank you seems really inadequate, but...Thank You Jesus. I love you too.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Callie's new bike

So, Dave has a weakness for two-year-old blondes with brown eyes that smile up at him and say "Daddy!" with a big grin on their faces. I tease him that he's a total sucker where Callie is concerned. Case in point: Check out Callie's new big girl bike. We were riding bikes the other day and Callie was riding Noah's really well. Dave decided that she needed to have a big girl bike and was super excited about the Daddy/Callie time in going to pick one out. Dave picked it out so that it HAD to have the baby seat on the back. He was SO excited to be able to get this for her. Mu husband can be pretty stinkin cute. However, we had to order it because Walmart didn't have this particular model in the store. The bike came in today. So, when Dave came home from his conference, he put it together right away. Callie, in her highest voice, said, "Is that MY bike?!"

We spent the rest of the afternoon trying out her new bike (on the hottest day of the week)

Let's just say that Callie thinks her daddy's pretty great.

Monday, September 20, 2010

The best sermon I never heard...

Perhaps one of the most memorable sermons in my life is a sermon that I never heard first-hand. Yet, it's had an incredible impact on my life.

In college, my roommate at the time visited a church (that is now a part of our current network of churches, cool huh?). Let me just say that Sara, my roommate, has an uncanny ability to remember things...and an amazing ability to relate details. So, she came home from this particular church one Sunday (I had gone to a different church at the time) and mentioned how much she really enjoyed the sermon.

Me, being not so great with details, am trying to recall exactly how it went down as she retold the sermon to us...

The gist of the story was based on a passage in Luke about Jesus calming the storm. When read, the easiest conclusion to come to is, "That's amazing! Jesus calmed the storm!". However, the part that Jeff Miller, the pastor, picked out was that the disciples were in the boat with Jesus. They had seen the miraculous things Jesus had been doing over the last few months. They had seen him perform miracles, heal the sick, raise the dead. Jesus was in the boat! Yet, they still panicked, they still didn't believe, they still tried doing everything in vain to stop the boat from sinking. The point he was trying to make was "Jesus was in the boat." Why do we worry, when Jesus is with us?

Anyway, for some reason, this became really popular when it got retold multiple times to girls on our floor. One of our friends even drew us a picture of a boat that proclaimed, "Jesus is in the boat" that we hung on the back of our door at 711 Hamilton (woot! woot!). It became a helpful reminder when we got bogged down and discouraged, "Jesus is in the boat."

Every time I read that passage of scripture, I am reminded that Jesus is in the boat, and I don't need to worry or fear, for He is with me.

Boiler Up!

Dave and I had the opportunity to go to our very first Purdue game this last weekend. Yep, after 4 years, we made it. :-) The tickets were given to us by a lady whose dog Dave treated. She works for the John Purdue club, and was so thankful to Dave that she offered him Purdue tickets. Our seats were AMAZING!

We were right on the 40 yard line, midway up in the nicer stadium seats. If we wanted, we could have been in the air conditioned lobby just above where our seats were. We have been supremely spoiled when it comes to attending sporting events.

Even better, it was a wonderful memory. Dave and I were able to sit and take it all in with no cares for a good three hours. The Boilers won, which was just nice. It was a wonderful date day and I loved spending some good quality time with Dave. Speaking of which, I have an incredibly PATIENT husband. In the last seven years, I have probably asked hundreds of questions about the game of football. I now, thankfully, have at least a basic understanding of how the game is played, but now it's all the technical questions, which he still answered with great patience. Yeah, I got a good one. I know.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Hello clear pond

If you didn't know...our pond has had a green cover on it for the last two years (look up duck weed and water meal). The homeowners around the pond finally got organized this year and bought the chemicals to treat it. I'm happy to say, the pond looks beautiful again. I can actually see the reflection of the trees in the water. I love sitting out there in the evenings and just watching the trees and the pond. I am so thankful that this is where we are right now.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Noah's first day

Noah started his first day of preschool last Wednesday. He LOVES it, and I am so happy for him.

Here he is hanging up his bookbag for the first time.

My big 4 year old. I love him so much.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Proud Momma Moment

We had Noah's open house for preschool this morning. I think he's really going to like it, although he was a bit shy when meeting the teacher (he loved all the different toys he could play with). Callie went along too. She also loved it. There were babies and dress up. She was very content. While she was playing, I noticed that another girl was playing with a doll that Callie had previously been playing with. I went over and helped Callie find another baby to play with. I stood up and the girl with Callie's previous baby grabbed the doll out of Callie's hands. Poor Callie just started crying. I started to intervene and then the girl's mom came. She made the girl give the doll back to Callie and said, "We're going through the terrible twos". I could relate, and certainly didn't hold it against her. We've had our share of moments too. All was well again and the kids were playing nicely. After another ten minutes, I told my kiddos that it was time to go. I asked Callie to put her baby down so that we could go. She picked it up, looked around the room, located the girl who had previously taken the doll from her, walked up to her, and handed her the doll, saying, "Here you go". I just stood there watching it play out in front of me. The mom was a bit taken aback at first and then said how sweet Callie was. I was so proud of Callie for showing love to this little girl, even when the little girl hadn't shown kindness to her.

We walked out and I said, "You showed Jesus' love to that little girl. I'm so proud of you." Callie just said, "Yeah."

For all the tough moments in parenting, it's moments like this where I say, "Yep, it's all worth it."