Wednesday, May 19, 2010


I've been reading this book Strong Women, Soft Hearts by Paula Rinehart and I came across this from about p. 44 (I think, don't have book in front of me right now... just my notebook)

"One of my favorite southern novelists claims that you know you're an adult when you start to realize that some sorrows in life will never go away. You learn to carry them with you in ways that enrich rather than debilitate your life, in ways that make you wise."

More to come on this, but I thought it was worth mentioning. Contemplation is underway... :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Reflections on Isaiah 61:3

Disjointed thoughts... maybe they will help someone out there... maybe they are just for me.... Here goes:

Isaiah 61:3 "and provide for those who grieve in Zion-- to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor."

I've been reflecting some on this verse lately... there have been a lot of seasons of grief in my life lately for very different reasons and I've been trying to savor the time (as strange as that might sound at first) because I know that the Lord wants to show me more of himself through these different things. I've been thinking some about the crown of BEAUTY (instead of ashes), oil of GLADNESS (instead of mourning) and garment of PRAISE (instead of a spirt of despair)... The Lord's promises in scripture are true. These are some of the things for which Christ came to earth to provide for us. He wants to provide for all who grieve...

What would it mean to truly see beauty from the ashes?

What would it mean to be glad and not mourn over the losses anymore?

What would it look like to truly praise the Lord in all things instead of being hung up in despair?

I am really posing these questions for myself more than anyone else this evening, but if you are reading this and you have thoughts to share, by all means jump in.

I think there is a time for every purpose under heaven (Eccl. 3) and so I am continuing to walk the long road of grieving various losses until the Lord brings complete restoration/ comfort for the present time... but at the same time seeing bits of the BEAUTY, GLADNESS and PRAISE that can be seen and given to the Lord even through grief still being present.

He is such an incredible God. He provides us with exactly what we need, when we need it.

I am praying that I can be more observant in the things he wants to teach me. I am hoping to learn lessons he wants to teach me the first time around and not have to keep repeating the experiences in some way until I learn the lesson! Oh Lord, I believe you.. I believe your promises and who you are... I believe you! Help my unbelief!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Lent, a season for reflection

I've been away from blogging for a while, but wanted to jump back in with some thoughts on Multitude Monday. This lent season I have been reflecting and turning to the cross to examine my life in a new light.

holy experience

It was twenty years ago this lent season that I considered publically professing my faith in Christ. Twenty years?! I feel blessed to have walked with the Lord most of my life, but it gives me great joy to reflect and hope and dream about the next twenty years!

Today, I am thankful for...

121. Being given the gift of creativity because He is our creative (Creator) God!

122. Walks without coats!! :) *Yay for warmer temperatures!*

123. Beauty in simplicity and the everyday.

124. Finding a place to purchase Pearl Barley! (I've been on this quest since we moved to our new location over 2 months ago!)

125. Hope for the future... hope that the Lord will accomplish more than we can ask or imagine!

126. Bright colors!

127. Worship... any time, any place... the ability to worship the Lord God for who he is.

128. Authenticity

129. Heartfelt prayers

130. News that we will be aunt and uncle again!

131. To share in the joy of first-time parents-to-be!

132. Seeing young ones grow up to love the Lord and desire to worship him with their lives.

133. To hear news of a dear friend's engagement!

134. To know that God's purposes will be accomplished and to get the chance to be involved in what he is doing.

And last, but not least on my list today, I am thankful for

135. Ants! I wish they would carry on outside my house, but they are interesting little creatures to watch! :)

Blessings to all on this Monday as we give thanks to the Lord for his many blessings. Praying that this lent season will continue to be a time of reflection, revival and rest in the Lord.

Isaiah 30: 15 (NIV) "This is what the Soverign Lord, The Holy One of Israel say, 'In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength'....

Monday, February 8, 2010

Thankful thoughts on a cold day

holy experience

112. Baby/toddler giggles!

113. The Holy Spirit to lead and guide into all Truth

114. Feathery snow falling and making the brown clean and new

115. Blankets to huddle under when there the furnace isn't working...

116. Funds in reserve to pay for a new furnace... praise the Lord! (Hope it might be installed soon... :)

117. Having a family to cuddle up with on these cold days and nights.

118. Enjoying a good book over the past few weeks and having lots of new/revisited things to think about... (Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore)

119. The chance to apply for a part-time job and to leave the decision in God's hands... I will be okay with either option (getting the job or not getting the job!)

120. God's grace for ME... who is not always full of his grace... the chance to be filled by his Spirit and for his mercy to be new every morning. Lord, thank you for your faithfulness to me!

Monday, February 1, 2010

The next hundred... Multitude Monday

holy experience

101. God's grace! I never lack to be amazed that he extends it to me.

102. The Bible-- God's words to us. How incredible is that?!

103. Heartfelt prayers poured out at his feet

104. Another opportunity to trust Him more

105. Knowing that He is big enough to carry all my fears and my cares

106. Watching Jeopardy at my mom's house and feeling like my dad is just going to be back home soon... He's just been at work, right? And he's just coming home like he always used to after a long day of work... Even though it was bittersweet to feel like he would just be walking in the door any minute (he always got home during Jeopardy when I was a kid!), I was still glad to be able to remember. And though this time of grieving does not seem to get easier... if anything it gets harder... I am so glad for the life we got to spend together. I was blessed with a wonderful daddy!

And some of the more "tangible/practical"...

107. Snow boots to walk in these 5.5 inches we got recently! :)

108. NOT getting stuck in the ditch or spinning off the road on a patch of black ice!

109. Windows getting new trim inside!! :) Several were just finished today!

110. Fitting back into my "pre-pregnancy jeans"... at least one pair of them.... Hoping to continue gaining better health! (It's about time, lol! The baby is 15 months old now!!!)

111. Thankful that even random "thankful posts" can be entered into this community of acceptance.

My heart is full of thanks tonight. Blessings to all in the gratitude community! Angela

Monday, January 25, 2010

Thankful when times are Gray... Multitude Monday

94. Extra snuggles from a cuddly little one :-)

95. My husband keeping watch over said little one Saturday afternoon and suggesting I take a nap... apparently a much needed 3 hour nap!

96. Friday night homemade pizza and movie nights (Crust recipe will be coming soon... I didn't realize I do not have it really "written down" yet!)

97. The way the trees look without their leaves right now... beautiful creations!

98. The slate blue sky contrasting against the field grasses and rolling hills background.

99. A soft dusting of snow!

100. Knowing that even though I have this small sickness (cold has turned to sinus infection, I think...), that this too will pass.. Reminding myself of the many truly hurting people around the world both physically and emotionally... O Lord, make me mindful of those hurting in Haiti and around the world. Please, help remind me not to waste, but to use this "slowing time" in our house to pray for for those who are really hurting!

As a friend e-mailed to me this weekend, "things feel kind of gray here". I feel that too... in my spirit and in my physical feelings right now. Thank you, Lord, that you are present even when times are gray and it seems like the sun is absent. Please help us focus our eyes on the SON and remember that you are doing a work, even when our present seems to disguise that work... Help me to trust you more!

holy experience

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


"Courage is not limited to the battlefield or the Indianapolis 500 or bravely catching a thief in your house. The real tests of courage are much quieter. They are the inner tests, like remaining faithful when nobody's looking, like enduring pain when the room is empty, like standing alone when you're misunderstood."

— Charles Swindoll

I stumbled upon this Chuck Swindoll quote and found it inspiring and thought provoking... In what ways have you shown courage lately?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Multitude Monday!

81. New windows are installed in our house!

82. Enjoying my new bible study (the second time around... has it really already been 10 years?!) (Breaking Free by Beth Moore)

83. Meeting a gal at bible study who has never done a study before! So excited to get to know her and encourage her in her pursuit of Jesus.

84. Sweet rosy baby cheeks :)

85. "City-boy" husband delighting in living in the country... :) "Look! There's an owl!" "Wow, we can see the stars from our window out here!" etc... lots of fun to see the place I grew up near through his eyes of delight.

86. Fog rolling across the fields

87. Pumpkins to make curry pumpkin soup sometime this week...

88. Picking up sticks in our yard

89. Setting up a compost place

90. Reading about creativity!

91. Using my handmade dishrag for the first time. Handmade by me!

92. The joys of winter.. a chance to renew, make plans for the garden, cuddle up with those I hold dear!

93. Resting in the peace that He is my JOY!

holy experience

Saturday, January 16, 2010

New verse to memorize for end of Jan, beginning of February 2010

Isaiah 61:1-4 (NIV)

1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,

2 to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn,

3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion-- to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.

4 They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Celebrating a return to Multitude Monday!

68. HOPE! (and hope does not disappoint us!!)

69. Thankful for "returning" to write down the things I am thankful for!

70. A house to work into making a home... the smallness will just help us be all the more cozy. Oh Lord, I pray you would fill this space with yourself... fill this home with hospitality, kindness, patience, love... fill us up with yourself!

71. My husband enjoying his new job! Also, for the job itself... praise be to the Father!

72. For the future friends the Lord will provide for me here in this new place.

73. For encouragement from friends new and old to trust in Him with all my heart.

74. The beauty of the snow as it sparkles.

75. Washing machine and dryers that work and make the Monday tasks easier...

76. Smiles from my not so little baby... :) So glad she has been entrusted to us!

77. Getting the car back up the hill!

78. Friends celebrating TWENTY years of marriage this month! Praise to the Father!

79. Mama giving me hope through some of her own. Even through her grief, she is reaching out to trust in Him... praise you Jesus!

80. The tea kettle boiling water... and the cup of tea that awaits me soon! :)

holy experience

Sunday, January 3, 2010

First verse to work on memorizing this year- 2010!

By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this,
but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward- to Jesus.

I'm off and running, and I am not turning back.

Phillipians 3:13 in the Message version