Archive | February, 2013

Thoughts and Cool Greek Names

27 Feb

We’re ending our Beth Moore James Bible study this week. I have to say this study has rocked my world! I’ve always thought the book of James was good, but now, its slap yo’ face good. I told Brandn we need to have a son and name him James, not “James” but whatever the Greek name for James is….he vetoed my idea right there on the spot and then put his foot down, literally. James is derived from Jacob (you know, the father of the 12 tribes if Israel) and “James” is “Demetrious” in Greek. (Super cool. Brandn, I think we need to revisit the topic of naming our future, hypothetical son.)

Anyway…..

Some verses that stood out to me are:

1.  Greetings – James 1:1 “Greetings” comes from the Greek work “chairein” pronounced kie-rain. It means “joy to you.” Beth said joy is your birthright from God and NO ONE has the right to take it from you…..love that. Why do we allow people to steal our joy? Good question. (Chairein is what I want to name our future, hypothetical daughter…vetoed again.)

2.  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. – James 1:27  I used to overlook verses like this.  But recently I can’t get past them.

3.  What good is it my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? – James 2:14  Beth summed James up like this: Do it; if you don’t live it, you don’t believe it.  Ouch!

4.  But He gives greater grace. – James 4:6 Grace is a free gift. I show grace by tolerating annoying people instead of punching them. Thankfully God’s grace is GREATER. He doesn’t just tolerate us. He loves us, He delights in us. He knit us together in our mother’s womb and knew our names before she knew she was pregnant.

5.  If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins. – James 4:17 Well crap! I guess “it’s the thought that counts” doesn’t do me any good here. Yes, deciding to do something is great, but if I don’t follow through; it’s meaningless.

Lots more thoughts but I wanted to keep this blog short and sweet.

Chairein!!!!

Thanks for allowing me to share my world with you….welcome to my brain!

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Life Lessons Learned on a Bike Ride

21 Feb

Poor Danica.

She can’t do anything without having to listen to me turn it into a life lesson.  I take pride in my skill, (yah, yah, I know, pride before tha fall.)  I’m not sure what I like better; the fact that I’m teaching her things or the sound of my own voice.  I give my dad full credit for this.  No, he didn’t turn everything into a life lesson; his skill was telling me how everything went back to the Roman Empire, a Latin root word or something to do with Physics or calculus.  He totally reminds me of Mr Portokalos,  the dad from My Big Fat Greek Wedding, but without the Windex. 

There you go!

 Ok, back to Danica.  We went for some exercise the other day.  She likes to ride her Brave tricycle while I run.  We have good sidewalks and a convenience store exactly 1 mile down the street so we go there and back.  My daughter isn’t the most athletic thing, but she’s cute and she tries.  We were going against the wind  (naturally, I was singing the Bob Seger song.)   I couldn’t see her shadow anymore.  I turned around and she was pretty far behind me and moving very slow.  She said the wind was pushing her backwards.  She was trying to pedal but she wasn’t trying  hard enough for my liking.  I told her to her she needs to “dig deep.”  When things get hard you can’t just quit, that’s when you have to give it all you’ve got and keep fighting.  When life pushes against you, are you gonna let it push you down or are you gonna stand up and punch it in the face?”  She said she wants to punch it.

Moving on.  We were almost to the convenience store now.  There is a slight hill and she was going really fast.  We were slowing down at the intersection and the next thing I knew she had crashed and was half on the curb and half on the road.  I knew what happened but like a good mom I asked what happened anyway.

Through the tears she tells me she “got distracted by the big sand pile that is never here but it’s here today.”  I hug her and tell her to shake it off.  She just stares at me.  I tell her again to shake it off and then I start shaking my booty.  This gets her laughing and moving and we are having a dance party right there on the sidewalk.  Then she says she wants to go home.  I show her the convenience store and tell her we are one block away and ask if she wants to accomplish our goal or be cry baby quitters…she says she wants to quit.   Oh no….this is not acceptable!  I tell her wrong answer.

She then shows me a scratch on her hand and says she needs a band-aid.  It’s not bleeding and our rule is if it’s not bleeding, you don’t need a band-aid.  I decide this isn’t the best time to enforce the band-aid rule so I do what any good mother would do….I bribe her!!  I tell her if she rides to the store she can have the band-aid when we get home…success!

The rest of the way home I pump her up and tell her how proud I am.  I reiterate the fact that when life gets hard, we dig deep and pedal harder and when life knocks us down, we get up, shake our booty and carry on.

Photo: D enjoying her Christmas present.

Thanks for allowing me to share my world with you….welcome to my brain.

Book Review….Kisses from Katie

14 Feb

I just finished Kisses from Katie. I have to say this book is ridiculous and everyone should read it.  Disclaimer: I am not a book reviewer and no one is paying me to write this. 😉  I just think more people should be aware of this story. 

I am one of those people that hi-lite books. I know you anti-hi-liting people out there hate people like me but I can’t help it. I think if I hi-lite something, it will jump out later when I’m flipping through the pages. This is only true if I hi-lite a few points…..at least half this book is now blue!! I will never be able to find anything b/c everything stood out to me.

Like I said, you should read this book. It’s the story of a girl from Brentwood, Tennessee and how she opens her life up to God and moves to Uganda to be a kindergarten teacher for 1 year. She ends up staying there and adopts 14 girls, teaches at the school and feeds hundreds of kids daily and starts a non-profit organization that provides honest and dignified employment for women which empowers them and pulls them our of poverty which hopefully will break the cycle for their children.

Parts of this book will rip your heart out and make you wonder why God would allow such horrific things to happen. But then you see the beauty of it and how God moves through everything and how He can turn ugly to beautiful in the way only He can. There was a part I read (“read” may not be the correct word; I blubbered my way through it and then handed the book over b/c I couldn’t stop crying) out loud to my women’s group about how she came across her 12th and 13th girls. It starts out with Katie telling God no more kids; 11 is enough. But then God tells her, she will adopt a girl named Sarah. Well she didn’t know who Sara was but she started loving, longing for, and missing her. Knowing her daughter was out there somewhere broke her heart b/c she knew Sara needed her. She prayed God I know she’s out there and I can’t stand it so you better bring her to my door. Well, guess who show showed up at her door the next day? Sara! She ended up adopting Sara and her sister as well.

This book is not a book advocating moving to a third world country and adopting kids; nor is it a book bragging about what she is doing. Katie is so humbled and can’t get over the fact that God would use someone like her for His glory. This is simply a book talking about God’s love for His people. God’s greatest commandment is this: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these. – Mark 12:31-33.

This book has touched my soul. I have no idea how to love my neighbor as myself. My prayer is that when opportunities present themselves, my eyes are open to see them, my ears are open to hear them, and my heart is open to care.

Thanks for allowing me to share my world with you…..welcome to my brain.