Thursday, January 1, 2009

happy new year

new years resolutions are kind of a funny thing. apparently you love them or think they are ridiculous. i've had my years of having only 1 resolution and i've had my years of choosing 27. i'm not sure i've ever kept one. i don't remember. but a new year is one of those "moment in time" days that make me think about the past and the future, hopes and disappointments, who i am and who i want to be.

i found some old prayer journals last night. i'm really terrible at keeping any kind of journal (thus the 2 month blogging break?) but from reading my journals i tend to write in them during important times in my life - my first trip to belize, right before i chose a grad school, during a breakup, my first medical mission,... (really funny to see how my handwriting has changed - oh how i miss the i's dotted with a circle) but besides my handwriting, my faith has changed too. and i don't know that it has all changed for the better. as i've become more mature and independent in life, i wonder if i've become less dependent on God? my faith was so pure and real and humble in those journals. i've really struggled with developing my faith as a married, full-time job holding, grown woman. i no longer have kojie prayer groups and summer camp and retreats and roommates up til 3 discussing life with me. but that's not what my faith is in, so how do you make that transition? (jesse has talked about this too - i would love any comments /suggestions on this)

so, i have my list of resolutions (get back to wedding day weight, finish my next half-marathon in 2:30, read the bible all the way through, blogging more, learn to sew, be a better wife, vacuum every day, stop drinking starbucks...) - all good things. but what i really want to do is just that - DO. i want to be purposeful in my words and actions and time management. i want to put into action what i learned from camps and prayer groups and serve/teach whoever God puts in my life, i want to stop complaining and live joyfully. basically, i want to quit talking about everything i want to change and just do it already.

so this may seem really pathetically jumbled and you will either think i have a million resolutions or can't figure out what it is and that's ok. i'm not sure either. i don't have a plan and obviously can't put it into words or i wouldn't be rambling like this... maybe it's a feeling - a combination of excitement and "fed up with the way i've been doing this life thing" feeling... but here are some verses and quotes that i found while trying to say what i'm thinking.

act justly, love mercy, walk humbly with God (micah 6:8)

nobody can go back and start a new beginning but anyone can start today and make a new ending

"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing."
Walt Disney

if you always do things the way you've always done them , you are guaranteed to get the same results -nick saban

be the change you wish to see in the world - gandhi

I'm a part of the fellowship of the unashamed. The die has been cast. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I'm a disciple of His and I won't look back, let up, slow down, back away, or be still.
My past is redeemed. My present makes sense. My future is secure. I'm done and finished with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap living, and dwarfed goals.
I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I don't have to be right, or first, or tops, or recognized, or praised, or rewarded. I live by faith, lean on His presence, walk by patience, lift by prayer, and labor by Holy Spirit power.
My pace is set. My gait is fast. My goal is heaven. My road may be narrow, my way rough, my companions few, but my guide is reliable and my mission is clear.
I will not be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, turned back, deluded or delayed.
I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice or hesitate in the presence of the adversary. I will not negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.
I won't give up, shut up, or let up until I have stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid up, and preached up for the cause of Christ.
I am a disciple of Jesus I must give until I drop, preach until all know, and work until He comes. And when He does come for His own, He'll have no problems recognizing me. My colors will be clear!

i look back on 2008 and am so thankful for my husband, my family, my house, my job, my friends, grace, love,... but i can't tell you any change i've made or activity i've done that i am proud of or want to make sure i do again. how sad is that? this time next year i hope i have new friends, new service areas, a better understanding of how amazing God is... some reminder of how big He is and how small I am... something significant, not from me but that comes from allowing Him to be big ...

Happy 2009! thanks for letting me ramble...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

happy birthday rudy!

saturday night rudy and i went to dinner to celebrate his birthday (it was sunday). once we sat down i faked going to the bathroom and called his parents who were waiting in the parking lot. they walked in and surprised him. let me tell you, rudy is one hard kid to surprise, but it took him about 20 seconds to even say anything. he was so excited to get to spend his birthday with them and couldn't believe we pulled it off. we had a great time and had dessert at the cheesecake corner. my parents came over sunday after church and we had a great lunch together. thanks rudy and ginger for driving so far and making rudy's birthday so special. we are thankful for our families.

rudy - i hope this is the best year ever! i love you!

Monday, May 5, 2008

law and order

Craig (my brother) graduated from law school yesterday. I'm so proud of him!

Friday, April 11, 2008

hide and seek

so, i have to brag....  it's been one of those weeks where rudy's working nights and i'm working days, so our quality time is minimal. i'm an independent girl, and i love some alone time, but  i'll admit, there are some days that i get a little emotional (ok, probably a little whiny too) and have my pity party about missing my best friend.  knowing i had had "one of those days" yesterday, i got home tonight and found a mysterious note on the door.  my sweet hubby took me on a 10 clue scavenger hunt through the house with each clue telling me something he loved about me or something he loved about spending time together.  my final prize was a bosu balance trainer (no it wasn't a subtle hint to get back in pre-wedding shape, i'd been eyeing for a while).  

although i'm really excited about the bosu (which stands for BOth Sides Up), i was MOST excited about the game, reading the notes, and knowing the time he spent to put it together and that he was thinking about me all day.  there i was, alone in our house, giggling like a little girl.  isn't it amazing what someone else's thoughtfulness can do for your attitude?
what are some surprises you have done for your significant others or that they have done for you?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

blue like jazz and stuff

so, this blogging thing is harder than it looks.  it's hard keeping up with everyone else's blog, much less mine!  . 

so here's a quick look at march for us
- we went to hot springs, AR where rudy gave his first professional presentation.  he was awesome!  i was so proud of him.  he worked really  hard to prepare and seemed so
 comfortable up there.  we got to stay at the historical
 arlington hotel right next to the "al capone" room.  we got massages and had fun just spending time together.  

- we left and drove straight to nashville and got to see BB King himself in concert at the Ryman Hotel.  we had given my dad tickets for his birthday and my parents, craig, rudy, and i all got to go.  bb was amazing!  he's 82 years old and can still dance better than i ever thought about ( i know that's not saying a lot).  he was so entertaining.  i would love to sit and just listen to him and his band sit around telling stories. (Speaking of blues and jazz, donald miller, author of blue like jazz, is going to be speaking at hope prebyterian on saturday, april 12th.  tickets are $20 and go to habitat for hope.  go to www.

- we've also been training for the rock and roll half-marathon in nashville.  here's a picture of the mississippi river where we usually run.  typically, we run right beside the 2nd row of trees - now half-way underwater.  the water level is up so high.  they closed the back road into our neighborhood b/c it was flooded.  it's going down now though.

- please pray for ethan powell's family.  his link is to the left.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

times are changing

"There is a time for everything..." - Ecclesiastes 3
the time has come for Highland church to no longer meet at 443 South Highland. tomorrow i will worship at a different place, at a different time. i have worshipped at 443 south highland for almost 30 years. i am full of emotions about this change.

i like to think that i am progressive, a mover and a shaker, a leader, an optimist. but i struggle - almost to the point of resistance - to change. i was sad when my grandmother changed our christmas stockings after 20 years. i have every t-shirt from high school on. until last month i've had the same haircut all my life (give or take some 80's bangs). i still call macy's "goldsmith's", 385 "nonconnah" and U of M "memphis state." i have learned that i am very much a traditionalist and a sentimentalist. i am not superstitious. i do not think there is anything special or holy about the bricks or the address. highland is people not rooms, hearts not pews. but still, i have cried,...a lot.
with all of the thoughts and emotions that have come with this transition, i think the thing i am most sad about is that highland is the place where i met Jesus. i saw Him at highland in sunday school during flannel board lessons, in John Moore's class when he acted out Jesus in the temple, at VBS, in David Skidmore's junior high Wednesday night classes, at weddings, during Workcamp devotionals during which I was baptized, during intern sleepovers and time trip meetings, during several funerals, at so many of Buster's classes and later as an intern with Buster, during baptism after baptism, during bible studies with Rudy and Chris, while forming friendships that make every day better. i have laughed and cried, worshiped and played and prayed at Highland. i have so many memories in every room. i would not be who i am today without events and times that have occurred in that building. i am sad that i will never be able to drive my children by the building where i gave my life to Christ and my heart to Rudy.

then i started thinking of other places i have met Jesus by the grace of God - the halls of lebonheur, under a palm tree in belize, in a pool at camp cordova, in my bedroom, in a sweaty, hot room in mexico, on the beach and on a mountaintop, in the shower, searcy, arkansas, driving in my car, in a dorm room, orange mound, in our Reach group, through a card sent by a friend, through a homeless man in Memphis, via a stranger's blog,...

this prompted me to think of the places in the Bible where God's presence was most clear to others - a bush on fire, a sea divided in half, a boat full of smelly animals, in a man with leprosy, while having a meal at 2 single women's home, on a mountain, walking on a road, fishing, inside the belly of a fish, ... the list goes on and on. although the temple or tabernacle were the official places of worship during this time, God revealed himself and changed lives in other settings and during activities not necessarily set aside for worship.

so i think i've learned 2 lessons as we begin this transition:

#1 - maybe my closest encounters with God should not be within the confines of a church building. i want to have my eyes open to see God where i am. i want to live my life in a way that i experience God and share him with others whether i am at church or anywhere else in the world.

#2 - Hebrews 13:8 says, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." this verse keeps coming to mind as i struggle with change. no matter what is going on in my life whether that be a different set of bricks to worship in, health, family, work, or other areas, Jesus will be the same. He will meet me where i am in life with His perfect love and amazing grace. i am thankful for how God worked through humble hearts at 443 south highland and pray with eagerness for what He will use us for in the future.

thanks for bearing with the emotional post. it's hard to convey the emotions into words. i'm forever grateful and thankful for the people - too many to name - who have brought me closer to Jesus. stay tuned for pictures and posts from the handprint wall.

Monday, January 21, 2008

sweet home alabama

we've had an action packed and fun last few days.  thursday we drove to birmingham and had dinner with our good friends scott, kathleen, corinne, and grayson (here's a recent picture of the greatest kids in alabama).  thank you for the yummy dinner.  we loved seeing y'all!  then we went to the george strait concert that was part of rudy's Christmas present.  his concert was fabulous and even better when kenny chesney showed up!  they sang "amarillo by morning" as a duet - wow.  we got our picture made with sarah johns ( i've never heard of her but she opened for george and we thought she might be famous one day!) but i'd rather post the picture of kenny and george.  friday we went to helen keller's birthplace.  i get a lot of laughs about this, but she really was my "childhood hero" and i learned a lot about her life.  what an example of determination and service to others.  this is a picture of us by the famous water pump where she learned to finger spell.  next we enjoyed the natural springs in tuscumbia, alabama.  then - i'm not kidding, i couldn't make this up - we went to the world's only coon dog cemetery.  we kept seeing signs and brochures about it so we decided to check it out - not realizing it was 30 miles out of the way!  i've never seen so many atrocious fake flowers.  there were grave markers on every grave.  some were made of marble, some carved out of a piece of tin, but most with heartfelt epitaths.  i love dogs, but i'm not really sure how i felt about it.  the pictures really don't do it justice.  overall, the best part was that it was really great spending time together and making memories.