Tag Archives: family

I Want to Be a Tree Part 3

He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,

Which yields its fruit in its season

And its leaf does not wither;

And in whatever he does, he prospers.

Psalm 1:3

I love trees, but I’m not a tree hugger in the environmental sense. Trees are a poetic inspiration for me. I love to look at them in pictures and in real life.

One of my spiritual daughters has heard me talk about my love for trees so many times, that she has started to tease me about it. She suggests that when I die, I should be cremated and planted with a young tree so that I can physically become a tree!

Consider Psalm 1:3.

  • He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Firmly planted makes me think that someone took the care to plan where the tree was placed. Being close to streams means that the tree’s root system has underground access to life giving water.
  • Which yields its fruit in season At the right time fruit happens. The tree doesn’t have to strain to produce fruit.
  • And its leaf does not wither; Because this tree is planted in fertile soil and in a strategic location, it stays healthy all the way to its tips.
  • And in whatever he does, he prospers. The person whose life is rooted like this tree will have success in whatever he does. Everything he touches will prosper.

Take time to consider your root system today. Ask Holy Spirit if there is any gardening He wants to do in your life. He knows exactly which nutrients and which environment you need so that you can stand firmly planted.

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Swirly spring Tree - Illustration

Psalm 1

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You’ve Got Mail

There are two questions I can be sure my husband will ask me every day:

#1 Has anyone checked the mail yet?

#2 Is there any chocolate in the house?

I generally have a confused feeling when he asks me these questions, because neither thought is naturally on my radar.

#1 Sorting through mail feels like a chore to me, so I tend to put off checking the mail.

#2 Chocolate is not very high on my list of favorites. Carbs are my weakness.

Today I want to focus on question #1.

Why does Christopher have such an interest in the mail…..

I decided to ask him about it. His reasons were:

  • maybe we will get an unexpected card
  • maybe we will get an unexpected gift
  • maybe a package that we forgot we ordered will arrive

All of his reasons had to do with the hope of getting a fun surprise!

This reminded me of one of the ways that Christopher and I are opposites.

I like to plan and check things off my list. I tend to live in task mode.  I really don’t care for surprises, even good ones.

Christopher likes a plan too, but a good surprise puts a big smile on his face!

Overall I think that his tendency to expect something good to come to us is a much more joyful way to live than my tendency to view all mail as work.

Can you picture how excited he would be if someone sent him a surprise gift of chocolate:

IN THE MAIL!

Maybe there is someone in your life that you could send an old school surprise to this week. Even a scrap of paper with a few encouraging words written on it would make sorting the mail a little more fun.

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May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13

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Help Me Name My Book

On my recent trip to Cuba I spent many hours traveling the countryside on a bus. There were moments where I sat gazing peacefully at the scenery outside. There were moments where I gave in to exhaustion and fell asleep. There were also many moments of wonderful conversation with the other team members sitting around me.

In one of the moments of swapping stories, my friend Kristi pointed out that I had a lot of unusual stories to tell. Honestly, my stories are my stories, and they have always just felt normal to me. The longer we talked I started to realize that my life has not been an ordinary one.

I decided to write a book. I have poured out my heart and soul onto the written page. I am in the final stages of editing, and now I need YOUR help.

Would you please help me name my book.

Click below to vote on your favorite title:

Click here to Vote

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The Story Behind Harry and Larry

My daughter Zoe wrote a book. She is ten years old. Knock me over with a feather! I knew she was a bit addicted to typing on her computer, but when she told me she had written a whole book I was quite surprised.

Having a creative child is really exciting, but it can also be a lot of work. When my daughter told me her news I could not just sit back and say, “Oh, that’s nice, Zoe.”

What’s a mom to do? I had to take action.

While Zoe’s story was very fun and well thought out, it needed a lot of editing to be put into book format.

I started off by editing the book myself.  I spent several hours over several days on this part.

Next I passed the manuscript on to my dad for proofreading. I asked my mom, who is a self-published author a few times over, to help me format the text into the correct page sizes.

Zoe drew a picture for the book cover.  She had very definite ideas about the way she wanted it to look.  Next, my spiritual daughter Ashley went to the drawing board to give the canaries the animated personality that Zoe envisioned.

Overall the process of turning a manuscript into a real book turned out to be a wonderful collaboration with family.

What fun!

Don’t let your dreams just be dreams.

Do your homework and make your ideas come to life!

 Click here to visit Zoe’s Blog

Click here to visit our Children’s Creativity site Fireflies Aglow

Click here to visit Ashley’s Blog

 

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It’s a Bad Moment When You Wreck Both of Your Vehicles at the Same Time

I have no idea how I can drive through a messy snowstorm and make it home unscathed, only to wreck both of my vehicles in my own driveway a couple days later when the weather is totally fine.
I do have a few lame excuses for how it happened:
  1. Our car had been at the mechanic shop for a couple days and I got very used to it being gone,
  2. I was in a hurry to get all the kids and all of our stuff into the van and to church on time,
  3. It was pitch dark outside so when I glanced at the driveway all I saw was black,
  4. Normally on Wednesday nights Christopher would have taken the car and headed to church by this time, but he was in Brazil preaching in a bunch of different churches.
None of these excuses make what happened much easier to bear. The fact of the matter is I just plain forgot that the car was in the driveway. I put my van into reverse, slowly backed up, and crunch! I paused. I was puzzled.  What in the world was that? Crap, oh yeah. 
Judah and I both got out of the van and looked around, but it was so dark out that we couldn’t really tell how much damage had been done. We got back into the van and headed to church.
The fact of the matter is no matter how much damage was done it just wasn’t worth losing my peace. I knew it was an important moment for my kids too. They needed to see mom not freak out over something that was clearly not a fun situation.
It may cost money to have the vehicles repaired, but money is just money. God provides what we need, and we use what He provides to take care of our needs.
Of course I would prefer not to spend money on repairing both of my vehicles, but hey, it is what it is.
The fact that this is the third time in my life that I have backed into a parked car should be laughable. I may not be laughing at it yet, but I am choosing to let it go.
Life is too short to stress over things that are not a matter of life and death.
Word to the wise: don’t park your car behind me!
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Cuba Update

I had a wonderful time on my trip to Cuba. This was my second visit to the island, and it was everything I expected it to be and more.

The first time I went I felt such joy the moment I stepped off the plane and into the immigrations area of the airport. It is like there is something in the atmosphere in Cuba that my spirit connects with.

As I spent time walking along the ocean and riding a bus throughout the island my spirit came alive more and more. The only way I can explain it is to say that the airways feel different there.

Each time I have gone to Cuba I have returned with fresh clarity and vision for my life and my family. It is amazing what getting away to a different location can do for your focus.

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One of the very best parts of my most recent trip was that I was able to take a few people with me. I absolutely loved seeing my team members come alive as God stirred up old and new things in their hearts.

One of the greatest joys of my life is to see people prosper in their souls. I love to see them living life to the fullest. Life is too short to sit back and wait for something interesting to happen.

We have to happen to life!

If you have ever considered going on a mission’s trip, please do it!

Here are some links for ministries that you can join up with in your adventure:

Leanne Goff Ministries

Heartland Breakthrough to the Nations

Randy Clark Global Awakening

 

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“Just Pray I Don’t Die”

It was the first day back to school after Christmas break. The kids were dragging.

As I dropped my son off at his school I said, “Elijah, remember that the kingdom of God is in your hands. You have power in your hands.”

I know my son, and I could tell that he internalized what I said and was in agreement.

Then, as he got out of the car he said, “Just pray I don’t die.”

What the heck?! Why is that phrase even a part of his vocabulary.

Now, he was not worried about school shootings. He was simply referring to the drudgery of math class!

“God help me to just make it through this boring class one more time.”

Two mindsets were crashing against each other in his head: the possibilities of going on a supernatural adventure and the process of living the everyday mundane.

This battle in the mind happens to us all. The struggle is real. The question is which line of thought are we going to choose to run with?

Many times over the years I have had to remind myself of who I really am in the midst of the mundane.

Running errands is not one of my favorite things to do by far. I much prefer to be at home. I have developed a habit while driving around town of praying and reminding myself that I am not a mere human. Even my presence in a public place, my smile, or a kind word holds power to shift the atmosphere wherever I go.

Here is a song I sometimes listen to in the car as I am headed out:  Supernatural by Mark Snider

When we give our lives to Christ and Holy Spirit comes to live inside of us we are not just normal humans anymore. The trick is to get your mind wrapped around that concept. Let’s believe and grow in this together!

 

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What if You Were to Become a Celebrity…

Social media seems to be a free for all where you can sling slander however much you like.

I read a tweet by Candace Cameron Bure the other day where she asked people to please send encouraging comments and tweets to her.  She mentioned that she was getting an onslaught of mean reactions, and that it was really discouraging.

Imagine being a public figure and having everyone pick apart your clothing style choices for your big event right where you and God and everyone else can read it.

Imagine having to never get online because you never know what horrible thing someone spewed about you and trying to stay positive in the midst of all that is too overwhelming.

Imagine truly trying to make a difference in the world and having people from all areas of society picking you to pieces.

Imagine accidentally becoming famous and having the whole world scrutinize your children every moment of every day.

Well known people are still people:

They are real.  

They have real spouses.

They have real children.

They have real feelings.

Spreading gossip and rumors about a well-known person is still wrong. Being famous does not make someone a fair target. Be kind, rewind….or better yet think before you speak.

You might just become well known yourself one day…..

Please comment which boundaries would you set to protect yourself and your family if you suddenly became famous?

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