Showing posts from December, 2009


Ok, so I know I wrote my Armchair QB on the sermon notes, but there was another sermon in that gathering that spoke even louder to me, and continues to resonate with me as the week passes.

The worship leader, Chris, nearly apologized for the many familiar songs that the band was playing because their rehearsal had gotten snowed out.  In introducing the next set, he explained it was an older song, but he just had to play it because his daughter requested is and how could he not give her this simple thing.

Did you hear the sermon? 

It still takes me to this quiet moment.  If an earthly dad will play his daughter a song (or give her something good to eat and not a stone...), how much more might God want to give to his children?  Do we dare ask?  Or do we hold back?

Too often I pray to a nebulous, impersonal god.  It's not that I don't know God, but I allow stuff to get in the way.  I get all tangled up in the expectations I have for myself, the disappointments and guilt that co…

The Reason for the Season

This post is participating in today's blog carnival on the word LOVE.  To read other posts, click here.

As all my friends texted holiday wishes this Christmas, one stood out.  This one seemed to go against all the "Keep Christ in Christmas" and "Jesus is the reason for the season" bumper stickers. 

This text said simply, U r the reason 4 the season.

At first I thought she wrote it incorrectly, so I read it again looking for the typo.  But, there wasn't one.

That's when it hit me: without me, there wouldn't be a need for Christmas.

Ok, so that sounds somewhat egocentric, but hang in there with me.  God is this crazy amazing being made of love.  It is out of that crazy, amazing love that he chose to step into flesh, to show us that God does love us and that he didn't abandon us to the evil that surrounds us, to bring us back to this relationship.  God, the first and greatest lover, pursues us, rescues us.  Of course not because we deserve it.  If…

Ugandan Mission

This bird is an African Crowned Crane.  It is the official bird of Uganda, on their flag and coat of arms, and the perfect picture to grace my posts about Uganda.  But, I get ahead of myself.

A dear friend has a daughter who wants to be a missionary nurse, and has for quite sometime altho she is only in high school.  I suppose we connected because I had wanted to be a missionary since Sunday school and the Lottie Moon offerings for overseas missionaries.  It wasn't until a college class recently that I found out Lottie Moon was a woman, however.  Somewhere between my own spiritual awakening and my friend's daughter's dreams, my own dreams have been rediscovered, this time with opportunity.

A group from church will be going to Uganda, inspired in part by Amazima.  I, too, have been touched by Katie's story, but I find this opportunity both intriguing and daunting.  To be able to serve with someone whose faith is so strong and special like Katie's would be an honor.…

Armchair QB

This Sunday we attended worship at Victory.  It felt nice to worship in community again.  Churches were snowed out last week, and we have been floundering in our church tryouts.  Sometimes it is just exhausting, particularly when all you want is to be at home with your family. 

This Sunday was the program that got snowed out, What Child is This, which focused on "behold," a word Scripture authors used to get readers attention.  Often the only things that people know about Jesus is that he was born in a manger and that his name is a cussword.  Pastor Curt illustrated some more things we should know about Jesus by using behold.

A prophecy written about Jesus but written 700 years before his birth:
Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14 NKJV

The sacrificial lamb, the prescribed sin offering from long ago:
The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The L…


This is a child from Peru that I sponsor with Compassion.  I would love to sponsor more kids, altho I am not sure how my husband would feel if he came home and found that we were caring for 5 more kids.  So, I am asking you to help.  Sponsor one for me.  For every new sponsorship YOU take on, I will take one.  Then I can blame it on your generosity!  :-)

Advent-week three

John's disciples said to Jesus, "Are you 'He who is to come' or do we look for another?" In reply, Jesus said: "Tell John what you hear and see: the blind recover their sight, cripples walk, lepers are cured, and the poor have good news preached to them..." Lk. 3:10

O Jesus, I rejoice at the signs that say you are near. Your power is everywhere if I could see it.

Yet my eyes often see only darkness and what has yet to be done. I believe in you, yet when I look around evil seems so strong and goodness so weak. If you have come, why is there still so much suffering and why do the poor still despair? Where are your miracles today?

Your grace, O Lord, is more fruitful in my world than I imagine. I know your power is everywhere around me, if I could only see it. Show me today where the blind see and cripples walk.

Make my vision sharper than it is.

Couldn't have said it any better...thanks

Blog Carnival: Church

Growing up a grandchild of a preacher has similar benefits of the pastor's kids, basically the run of the joint, but without as much pressure to be good.  Sure, Mommaw cracked our fingers if we yawned too loudly, but Nanny Eves always had lots of mints in case Pops got a little "long winded" as seems to be the tradition of Southern Baptists. 

The first church I remember is in Lititz where today it sadly is an empty shell of its former self.  Mostly I remember my Sunday school classroom in the basement where the paint was flaking on the concrete walls and the choir loft when Pops let me see that the church really did have bats in its belfry!  Later, my grandfather ended up in a double wide trailer of a rural church.  The memories I have of that church is more the building of it.  Clearly I can see the shape changing as some pews were brought in (and thank heavens some women made cushions!) and then a baptistry and even new classrooms.  Those memories smell like fruit pu…

What now?!

I used to believe in reincarnation.  Well, I cannot explain why I believed, except that I wanted it to be so.  I wanted there to be more than what there is, wanted a chance to do things better.  I no longer believe in reincarnation, but it has been replaced with a nagging question: what now?

If this one life is all I have, have I done enough?  If I have only one life to care for others, to love others, to give to others, to support others, have I done enough?  If I have only one life to love, have I forgiven enough, have I let go of the past, have I dreamnt big enough?  If I have only one life, have I laughed enough, learned enough, cried enough, created enough?

Since I only have this life, and it could end anytime, why do I fret so?  Why do I not belly laugh more?  Why do I worry about money?  Why do I think I should make my bed?  Why do I not think I should go on a trip?  Why do I not tell my husband I love him more?

If all I have is simply grace and that even thru God's grace,…

Advent-week two

God of comfort, these times seem so uncertain, so scary.
The world seems darker than it has in the past
and I am less sure of myself.
Maybe that's a good thing;
maybe now I am turning to you with a realization
that I need you so much more
and that my life is not in my own control.
Let me not forget all of those around the world
who are frightened at this moment.
Help those who are victims of terrorism and war.
Be with those who have lost so much in the past year.
Hold us all in your loving arms and let us be comforted
by the strength and peace you want to much to offer us
through the birth of your son, Jesus.
Thank you for the many gifts you offer us.

from Praying Advent

A friend said to me recently, "I have to keep remembering that the birth of the savior was traumatic. This is not an idyllic time, this is the intensifying of a battle between God and Satan. But, it is also the tangible evidence that we are loved beyond imagination because God chose to be born and live among us…

Armchair QB

This Sunday I worked so I didn't make it to hear a real live pastor, but I thought I would write what I am learning from the Pastor.

My small group was challenged to read Genesis, which is much better than being challenged to read Leviticus, but sometimes, if you have read something a few times, you just read what you thought you read before.  This time, thanks to a deal at Ollie's, I was able to listen to it on CD.

Of course, I was a bit distracted thinking, "Would God have a voice like that?" and "Sarai sounds a bit trifling," but once I threw those thoughts out to listen, I heard something new.

God chooses us.

Now, I had heard a message once where the pastor said, "God chooses us because we won't choose Him."  I suppose this is along those lines, but it is also this odd understanding.

Adam did nothing to be Adam.  He was dirt before God came around.  Abram was a nomadic idol worshipper, but God spoke to him anyway.  Noah, well, he was just…

Advent-week one

It was a time like this,
War & tumult of war,
a horror in the air.
Hungry yawned the abyss-
and yet there came the star
and the child most wonderfully there.

It was time like this
of fear & lust for power,
license & greed and blight-
and yet the Prince of bliss
came into the darkest hour
in quiet & silent light.

And in a time like this
how celebrate his birth
when all things fall apart?
Ah! Wonderful it is
with no room on the earth
the stable is our heart.

Into the Darkest Hour
 by Madeline L'Engle

My husband and I were at my daughter in law's family house the other day, and we walked over to see their horses.  Tho I am not prissy by any means, horses poop, a lot.  Surrounded by farms, the air was fragrant.  You know what I mean.  I lived on a farm for a while as a child and we could tell which way the wind was blowing by the smell.  One way was cow, one chicken, another pig.

In this season of Advent, I am thinking about that night.  Jesus was born in a stable.  Not the clean cre…