Wednesday, December 5, 2012

O Christmas Tree

Every year we travel to the NC mountains to cut down that perfect Christmas tree.  We have to get one with out any holes, and the perfect shape.   We walk up and down the mountain, usually carrying one of my children on our shoulders, scouring the mountainside. Looking for the perfect one.  "This one is too tall, this one is too round".  It goes on and on, until we are finally so exhausted and so cold that we go back to the first one we looked at and chop it down.  (This year our tree is ginormous!)

This year as we were decorating our tree  it happened.  The stressful season snuck up on me. I didn't want it to happen, but it reared its ugly head.

 I have a very Norman Rockwell picture in my head of how the process should go.  You know what I am talking about.  Fire crackling in the background, Christmas carols being sung, hot chocolate with the perfect amount of marsh mellows snug in my hand, children laughing and singing along.... HA! Let me illustrate what it really looked like.

Kids running around the tree, me yelling "calm down, before you break something", Walker taking the newly hung ornaments off the tree, Carter putting the ornaments all in one place, and Tyler fussing about who gets to put the special ornaments up.
Crash!
 Yup! It happened. Through all of the hullabaloo an ornament got knocked off and broken.  What does this good mommy do? "That's it!", everyone STOP", I yelled!

It was not the reaction that Mr. Rockwell would have painted. But it was my reaction. One of our ornaments got broken. A fragile little Santa holding a heart with the words adoption painted on it.  In that moment I realized I was not going about the season with the right attitude. Who cares if we are loud?  Who cares if all of the ornaments are in the same spot?  Does it really matter if the ornaments get put on twice?

Jesus doesn't care.  He doesn't mind that we are a little loud, and cranky at times.  Right then, sitting on my floor, looking up at my ginormous tree full of homemade ornaments, I decided to make this year different.  Make it our own crazy "Griswald"- Asbury Christmas, with Jesus right in the center in our loud loving hearts!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

My Blue Chair

My husband and I are doing some decorating.  We are finally trying to grow our house into our life.  Which really means functional, durable pieces. We are a family of 3 destructive, messy boys.  We are also cheap, so off to thrift stores, Ikea and grandparents attics.  We decided that we needed to add color to our very beige house.  So red tables, green lamps, striped pillows and kids artwork now align our walls. 

On a recent trip to my favorite thrift shop I came across a faded blue wicker chair.  This chair is totally awesome! It has an upholstered seat, with real metal springs, worn arms and a deep back.  I was immediately drawn to this chair. This chair called my name! It is beaten up, grungy, and worn out.  Someone probably set it just hoping to make a few extra dollars, not thinking there was much life left in this old chair.  It was probably discarded because its not that pretty, its not new or shiny.  There are wicker pieces that are missing.  The seat needs new fabric.  It is dirty. But it is sooo cool!!

This has become my new favorite spot.  I have barely dusted it off.  The seat needs more fluff added, and cleaned but I love to sit in it.  It has a slight smell of must.  Yet I still sit in it.  I am drawn to this chair.  I love the story that it calls to me.  I love the imperfections, and the life that it represents.  I love the rough edges and the heart of this chair.

I know, right now you think I have totally lost my mind.  But follow me for a minute.  Isn't Jesus drawn to us?  Aren't we worn, damaged and beaten up?  Some of us might even be a little musty. Jesus tells us to come all who are weary, find strength in the shadow of His wings.  Find comfort for those who are heavy laden.  We could have been discarded, just like my blue chair, but Jesus came to take care of us. Jesus is always there to rescue us, he always loves us and is there for us. 

I think my blue chair represents the crazy of my life.  I have been through lots of ups and downs.  I have done things that I regret.  No matter what, I find that Jesus is always calling to me.  He is always ready to restore me and clean me up.  I pray that every time I pass my blue chair that I remember all that God has done for me.  He is my savior and always will be!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Letting Go, Letting God

I have been home from Peru for about 4 weeks now.  I still do not have all of the words to describe my experience.  I don't think I ever will.  God knows how to tug on my heart and whisper in my ear, and He only means for me to totally understand it.  It is one of the little gifts he has given me. 

I learned this year to just let go....Let go of all of the junk the world puts on me. It is so hard to let go, but being on top of the Andes in Peru helps me. The coolness of the air, the panoramic views of white capped mountains, the beautiful, colorful people.  I was able to let go of the stress of life, the worldly visions that tend to get in my way. 

On the third day we were hiking on a narrow path.  I was having a tough time catching my breath and getting my feet moving.  I prayed.....  The next thing I know I look down and my feet are moving...I know, duh! But I couldn't feel them, I was not really moving them.  It was totally God!!!  I let go of myself and God took over.  I was completely overwhelmed.  All I could do was cry.  This was the first time that I let go of me.  I could feel the Holy Sprirt moving my body and guiding my feet.  I knew at that moment that God completley had me in the palm of His hands.  I will never forget that feeling.  I crave it.

I long to feel God move me again.  I long to let go of me and let God take over.  My prayer everyday is that there would be less of me and more of God.

I encourage you to try and let go and let God move you!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Elijah, Really?

Elijah! Elijah! Elijah!
What was he thinking....Let's go back to the beginning shall we? 
Elijah  shows the 450 prophets of Baal that His God is greater.  He sacrificed a bull and wet the entire surrounding area of the alter, so much so that there was water puddling up underneath it.  Elijah asked God to show up, and God showed up in a BIG way.  He lit the whole alter on fire. 
Elijah stood up to 450 prophets.  Have you ever stood up to someone?  Think back, high school, middle school?  Was there ever a time that you stood up for yourself or a friend?   Kind of scary, kind of hard. Elijah stood up to 450 bullies!  Amazing. 
 Now enters Jezebel, the scariest bully of all.  She found out about Elijah. Those 450 prophets were her buddies.  They even dined with her.  She was not happy.  She sent word that she wanted to GET Elijah. 
Now Elijah is a brave, strong prophet of God, what do you suppose he did?  Stood up to Jezebel. Sent an army of angry angels.....Nope...He fled.  Really Elijah? Really?  You just stood up to 450 bad guys.  Surely you can handle one lady.  What was Elijah? 
HUMAN.
Think about it. When things are great we don't always talk to our Heavenly Father.  When things are bad we are sometimes mad at God.  He is always with us, no matter.  God is ready to guide us through the highs and lows of our life.  When things are going great, God is there cheering us on.  When things are going bad, God is right there to hold our tears in His hands. 
God cared for Elijah and sent an angel to him to give him food and drink.  "Arise and eat for the journey is too great for you" 1 Kings 19:7. 
The next time you feel like you can't do it...Remember that God already did it.  The journey is too great, but nothing is too great for God. We are human, just like Elijah...but thank goodness God loves is anyway!
1 Kings 18-19

Monday, May 28, 2012

I'm headed back to Peru Ya'll

Last year God tugged on my heart.  That was all it took.  I signed up to travel on an airplane for 8 hours, ride a bus for 8 hours, (from the sea to the mountains) and finally land at 10,000 feet in elevation in Waudas, Peru.   

 Our team hiked through the Andes mountains and handed bibles out to the native Quechua people.  People who have never had the bible translated in their native language.  It was so amazing!!  The faces of these people lit up when they were handed a bible they could read. The Quechua people are a people that have been forgotten by many, oppressed by many and are trying to survive off of the land.  We planted the seeds so that the organization we traveled with, AWI, could come back to the village and help it thrive with Jesus. 

I loved every minute of it.  The challenge of the hike, the camping, the interaction with the Peruvians.  I left a piece of my heart at 13, 000 feet elevation and I am happy to say that I am going back to leave more. 

Please pray for me and my team.  We will be gone June 20-June 29.  It is a very hard and long travel.  This trip is hard both physically and mentally.  Please pray that God will protect us and guide us through all situations.  If you are able to give financially please go to www.southbrookchurch.com and follow the donation links to my name. 
Thank you for your prayers.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Thank you!

Dear Jesus,
Thank you for allowing me to be FREE.  Free to feel, free to touch, Free to be.  Thank you Jesus for the freedom of worship and expression.  Thank you for the many talents of praise and worship leaders.  You have given them gifts to move people beyond words and fill eyes full of tears.  Thank you for raining down upon my heart and moving my entire spirit at the sound of your name.  You control my inner core.  Thank you for loving me, no matter how much of a mess I am.  Thank you Jesus for putting spiritually sound people in my life to help guide me.  Thank you for my wonderfully loud boys.  You always allow them to put a smile on my face when I need it most.  Thank you for a Godly husband who is sound and fair and loves me no matter what.  Thank you Jesus for giving your life so that I could have mine.  Guide me to make the most of this gift of life.  Help me impact those around me with Godly encouragement and spiritual support.

Your Daughter, filled with the Spirit,
Katie


We take each and everyday for granted.  Our freedom of being able to love God with out being persecuted. Write your letter today, what are you thankful for?


"Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be reomoved," says the Lord who has compassion on you.
Isaiah 54:10

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Everyday is A DAY!!

Everyday is a DAY...You know what I mean, A DAY... When you have no idea what is going to happen.   Days where noise doesn't stop, supper gets burned, kids get sick, and the carpet gets paint on it.  Here is just a glimpse at one of those days... Yes my friends this happened.  This was A DAY!


We were walking out of the door.  I put my bag and my keys on the front seat of my car and opened all the doors for the kids to crawl in.  Just as I was putting kids in the car my neighbor came over and we were talking (I got distracted, big mistake).    Walker the 2 year old was in the car.  While I wasn't looking not only did he close all of the doors, but he managed to lock  all of the  doors too.  No worries, I will just get my keys and unlock the doors...Uh Oh! The keys are in the car (of course we don't have a spare, why would we, right?)   The sun roof was open, sooooo I decided that we could lower my 3 year old into the car and have him unlock the doors.  He is small and could fit in the hole better. (yes, I know looking back, this might not have been the best idea.)  He doesn't understand what to do.  While he is fiddling with the buttons he steps on my keys and pushes the panic button.  OK...do you see this, or should I say do you hear this!  Now Walker is crying, Carter is freaking and the horn is blasting.  So, Tyler is next.  We lower Tyler into the car to unlock the door.  He pushes the unlock button, but no go.  He pulls the handle, but not hard enough.  Now he is yelling at us, we are yelling at him, and the little guys are crying.  Finally, after what seems like a very loud five minutes, Tyler pulls the handle and everybody is safe.


Everyday is  a DAY!!  Some DAYS are funnier than others. You just gotta laugh at what happens in life.  The silly moments that make you step back and thank God for all that you have.  I am so blessed to have these boys in my life.  Everyday is unpredictable, chaotic, and full of noise, and I love every minute of it!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

You gotta have faith, Faith, FAITH!

I was reading Matthew 21:18-22.  Jesus was hungry and saw a fig tree, the fig tree was not bearing fruit, so Jesus, being Jesus, withered up the fig tree.  Now His worthy companions, the disciples, saw the tree and said, "How did this fig tree wither so quickly?"....(Hello, you're with Jesus!)  Jesus is always patient.  He told them that if they have faith and do not doubt then they can do the same thing, they could even move mountains!
This got me thinking.... Who am I ?  Am I the fig tree that no longer bears the fruit of the spirit?  Or am I the disciples who asks, believes, and receives?  Do I have enough faith to move mountains and change lives? 
We all have the potential, but we often lack the belief.  What can we do everyday to bear the fruit? 
All it takes is a little faith.  Today tell a mountain to go jump in a lake!

The Message sums it up the best.... "Absolutely everything, ranging from small to large, as you make it a part of your believing prayer, gets included as you lay hold of God"

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Never Gonna grow Up!

This week I celebrated my 32nd birthday! Woohoo!! 
I love birthdays.  Every year I always want to do something different, amazing, fun, out of the ordinary.  This year was no different.  But what should I do, skydiving, circus school, trampoline jumping... Nope, something cooler.  How about a scavenger hunt!  I will gather all of my friends and they have to collect things about me (it is MY birthday after all).  Why not act like a kid for one night?


So I decided, I don't want to grow up!
Grown ups have to wash behind their ears, eat lots of green veggies, and pay bills.  They have to act responsible and use manners.  Grown ups have to wear socks that match and brush their hair.  One day out of the year shouldn't we be able to be silly and goofy and not have a care in the world? Shouldn't we be able to eat as much cake as we want?  Don't you wish that you don't have to worry about bills, and car payments?


You know Jesus was a little like this.  (He didn't have bills to pay, well expect for our salvation!) He wanted the little children to come to Him.  He tells us to have a child like faith.  Believe in Him no matter what.  Forget about our worries, our bills, our problems.  Give it all to Him.  Be silly for God.  What better way to get Jesus in your heart then by acting like a child.


For one day remember what it feels like. Remember when you would run down the street arms failing, feet pounding, heart racing. Pretend for one day that we don't have to wear matching socks, eat as much cake as you want, and act like a child of God!

Monday, February 13, 2012

I'm a Mess!

This weekend I took  a much needed road trip with my best good friend Rachel.  We drove five hours one way, no radio, no movies, just good old fashion girl talk, and boy did we talk.  Have you ever had a friend where you can just sit in silence and not be uncomfortable?  Well.... this was not a time where there was any silence.  When there was silence, we were just catching our breath!

We saw Lysa Terkeurst.  AMAZING....  She talked about many things that were powerful.  One thing that stuck out to me was that we do not have to be perfect (I know..no one is.)  But don't we try to be?  Don't we always pretend to have our lives completely intact?  Think about it.  In blog world, don't you show everybody the good, the clean, the perfect kids?  On Facebook, you don't put the pictures of you fresh out of bed; you post the ones in full make up, nicely dressed, great hair.  We show everyone the perfect husband, the perfect wife, the perfect kids, the perfect life.  Why?  What are you afraid of?  God did not intend for us to be perfect.  There has been only one person to walk the earth that was perfect...drum roll please....Jesus!  Why do we put up a false wall? 

OK...here it goes.  I am going to spill the beans.....Here are just a few flaws I have. 

My confession to all of blog world!
I'm a Mess
I don't like to clean.
I often have a pile of dirty clothes higher than my two year old.
My children usually have snot dripping out of their noses.
I yell.
I am not a good cook
I always have dirty dishes in the sink.
I don't take a shower everyday.
I eat chocolate right before bed.
I color my hair
My kids often have food on there face.
I let my 3 year old eat potato chips for supper.

There I did it! Now you know just a handful of my imperfections.  It is now out in cyber world for all to judge. 

 But,  before you judge me make a list of your own flaws.  Then at the bottom, put these words.
GOD STILL LOVES ME!  If we were all so perfect,  had everything together and in place, would we need to fall to our knees and pray? Would we really fully rely on God everyday? 

We are all imperfect, broken people.  We are all a mess.  In the wise words of Lysa, God sent a MESSiah.  It is not by accident that the first four letters spell MESS.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Unplugged!

So, I have a friend who is fasting from excess.  She got the idea from a crazy book  called Seven.  The mom in the book gave up one excessive thing every month for seven months.  She chose media, food, clothing, spending etc. She did this in order to rid her life of things that got in the way of her relationship with Christ.

Wow! How disciplined, how spiritual, how...wait, what?  Did I just agree to do this with her?  Quick, change the subject, maybe she didn't hear me....Oops, too late, the words are out of my mouth. 
So here it goes...For the month of February we will be unplugged....
I decided that for my family two days a week would work best.  I mean, let's face it the TV is very helpful in a house full of little people. (Don't judge me, it's just how it is). At first Tyler really did not want to give up his DS. We talked about how things keep us from focusing on the good in life that God has given us.  Like spending time together.  We as a family needed to be reminded.
On Thursday, our first day of being unplugged, the sky's opened up and blessed us with sunshine and warmth.  No need to be inside thinking about Pinterest, and Facebook.  It was a beautiful day.  We played outside most of the day.  God is good.  He knew that we needed a boost to get going. That night instead of winding down with TV and angry birds, Andy and Tyler actually built a volcano.  How cool! 

 Now Andy and I are excited about Tuesday and what we will do.  We may just dust off the puzzles and board games.  Or build the biggest volcano with smoke and fire and real dinosaurs....ok, maybe not dinosaurs, but fire would be cool....

Why not be unplugged for one day?  What are you afraid of?  Comfort, silence, stillness?  See what God is trying to tell you, but because of all of the noise around you, you can't hear Him.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Share a little spit and dirt....

One of my many favorite stories of Jesus is when he healed the blind man.  It is such a simple but profound story. 
 Jesus was in Bethsaida, people of the village brought him a blind man and asked him to heal the man.  Jesus, in true Jesus style took the man out of the village, you know, where there are less paparazzi.  Incognito.  There Jesus spit...OK...did you hear me...He SPIT!  Time out...this is what baseball players do, and little boys (all of the time, so much so that we have a rule at my house that you can only spit outside or in the bathroom sink, I'm not kidding!)
The Son of God spit on the ground.  I am sure the disciples were like, "Hey Jesus, do you need some water or something, how about a nap, I think you are too tired to think clearly right now".  If I were Jesus I would be grinning, thinking, "just wait boys, something cool is about to happen."
Jesus was not too tired, he did not need water, he knew exactly what he was doing, I mean it's Jesus for crying out loud!  It's Jesus spit! He rubbed the ground and made mud.  I can only imagine how long this took.   (Remember, I have little boys, It takes a while, trust me! )
 From that wonderfully gross, wet, soothing, mud something amazing happened.  Jesus spit a miracle!   Jesus rubbed the blind mans eyes and he could see.  Just like that! A miracle out of some of the dirtiest, grossest stuff; spit, dirt, mud.  That is all Jesus had.  That is all the Son of God needed.
Think about all of the resources we have.  What could we do! The possibilities are endless.  With just a little spit a miracle could happen. 
Spit on something and see what you can do!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Give the Poopy diapers to God?

You have heard the song; Everything you do for the glory of the Lord, who made us, because he made us....
Well I have been thinking about this alot.  We are commanded to do everything for Gods Glory.  Everything...Really???  What about vacuuming?  What about cooking supper?  OK...what about changing poopy diapers? EVERYTHING?  How does this work, I mean it's poop.  So that got me thinking (I know, watch out!), How can I make every little thing I do to be glorifying to the Lord.  So I made a list,  oh, how I love lists!
1. When I am vacuuming, simply pray for the little feet that cross the floor, pray for fun to be had on my stained carpet, pray that the new stains that will inevitable be placed on the carpet came from happy little boys.
2. While I am cooking supper, pray that the food would be well received (um...sometimes I am not the greatest cook), pray that table talk will be centered around God.  And pray that I don't burn the nutritional food that I am trying to make.  Pray that while I am cooking supper that my little one's will love one another in a way that will not make them scream and holler.
3. Poopy diapers... While I am cleaning up that wonderful poop.  I am praying that this little boy will grow up to be a true man of God.  That he will love the Lord with all of his being.  That he will make a Godly impression on his world.

I know this may seem a bit silly, but God wants every part of us, the good the bad and the poop!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Our Little Mason Jar

We have recently implemented a new thought in our house.  A great idea I found on Pinterest....which by the way I am soooo addicted to, Thanks Rachel! Anyway....We have started a blessing jar!  Each day we write on a piece of paper something that was really awesome for that day.  It could be anything....Mac and cheese for supper(I have little kids), to patience throughout the day, great reading time with Tyler, or a caring thoughtful husband. 
I love this little mason jar! When I pass it I get excited as to what fills it up.  The little things in a day that put a smile in our hearts. The little moments in a day that God blesses us with.  These are the things that are often looked over or forgotten.  I tend to remember the times when I yelled, or my kids were a mess in the store.  This little jar has changed my outlook.  I am looking for the great little moments.  The moments that need to fill the space in that little mason jar. 
This little mason jar has made me a better mom. I know it sounds weird, but really....  I now think about my actions, and pray more for patience.  I want more laughing in the day than discipline. 
Now we are counting our blessing's...but I am soon realizing that is a feat that is impossible!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Words for thought

Today I read Proverbs 18.  There is alot in this chapter that struck home with me.  Taming your tongue!!  

Here are a few verses that stuck out to me, from The Message.
Proverbs 18:6 The words of a fool start fights;
                       do him a favor and gag him.

Proverbs 18:8  Listening to gossip is like eating cheap candy;
                        Do you really want junk in your belly?

Proverbs 18:13 Answering before listening is both stupid and rude.

As I read this I couldn't help but think about all of the times that I gave out cheap candy to others, or that I accepted it as if it were a a gift.  When we are in a candy coated conversation how often do we get hyped up on sugar that we can't calm ourselves down and look at the damage our tongues create?

Lord, help me eat fruits and veggies!

So it's been awhile!!

It is has been a really long time since I posted last.  Alot has happened over the past several months.  To say the least it has been busy! Instead of playing catch up, I will start from where we are. 

Walker just turned 2! He had a fire truck birthday, with a  real live fire truck!! He wasn't really sure of it at first, but after a while he was climbing all over it. 

Carter is turning 3! He is going to have a John Deere party.  He is so excited.  That is all the boy can talk about.

Tyler is playing basketball.  He is quite good!! He got a basketball goal from Santa, and he loves playing with it.  He has his jump shot down!! 

As for Andy and I, we have just started our first small group.  He are so excited to see what god does with our group.  It is so cool to watch God use Andy for His glory.