Sunday, February 28, 2010

Striving to Stay on the Path

Why is it so easy to get sidetracked?

I'm reminded of Christian on his journey to the Celestial City. Why is it so easy to get off the path and so hard to stay on that straight and narrow path? I often find myself so conflicted. I want to be on that path! I can't do it alone though. Why do I think I can?

God is the only one who can help me stay on that path. Yet I turn from Him more than I turn to Him. Why is that? Why is it so hard to love someone that gave His son for me? God is holy, He is perfect, He is all-knowing, eternal, all-powerful. He is the way, the truth and the life. Yet I turn to self, I turn to this world.


I can't get away from it! I want to but I can't.

I think that spending a few minutes in God's word every morning is going to do the trick. I think going to a Bible study is going to help. Going to church and hearing a good sermon is gonna make the difference. Yet, so often it goes in one ear and out the other.

Francis Chan says, "It confuses us when loving God is hard. Shouldn't it be easy to love a God so wonderful? When we love God because we feel we should love Him, instead of genuinely loving out of our true selves, we have forgotten who God really is. It may sound 'un-Christian' to say that on some mornings I don't feel like loving God, or I just forget to. But I do. In our world, where hundreds of things distract us from God, we have to intentionally and consistently remind ourselves of Him."

I hesitate to write posts like this. Why? I don't want to sound preachy, or like I think I have some kind of knowledge that others don't. Really, I just want to be honest. Let you know that, hey, I struggle every day! I struggle to love a God who is pefectly holy. If you're honest with yourself, I'm guessing you all do to. If you don't, I'd love to hear what helps you but for me, as much as I want to be loving God every second of every day, I don't!

Where am I going with all this? I'm bringing it back to Scripture Memorization. In January I memorized Proverbs 31. Then that was done and I stopped. I am not writing God's word on my heart the way I should be. No, I don't think that memorizing scripture is going to solve my problems as a Christian, but it is one more thing to get the focus of my mind off of the things of this world and focused on God.

So once again I am going to challenge you all to memorize scripture with me. This time I am going to memorize Psalm 139. This is my favorite psalm. It was a huge comfort to me in a very difficult time in my life. The title in my Bible above this psalm is "God's Perfect Knowledge of Man." WOW! Amazing isn't it!

I'll be honest, this is take 2 for me. I tried this about a year ago and I never finished the whole thing.

I think the best way is to just jump right in and memorize a verse a day. When I spread it out, I end up just putting it off. Since tomorrow is March 1st, I will start with verse one and do a verse a day. Hope you will join me and if that is too fast for you, just go at your own pace.

This time I am not going to repost all the verses, since I'm guessing you all have your own Bible. Feel free to email me and let me know if you are joining me, we can be an encouragement to eachother.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Playdoh - Love it or hate it

I love that my kids love to play with playdoh.

I hate the mess.

Yesterday I went to run on the treadmill and decided that playdoh would be a good thing to keep the kids busy while I was running. I came back to the kitchen with no kids in sight and my counter looking like this.

I love this beautiful cake with a cherry on top that Alex made.

As I went upstairs to take a shower I told the kids they needed to clean up their mess. I figured that they would just clean up the playdoh and all the little toys to go with it and then I could come downstairs and wipe the counters. I came back downstairs to this.

Needless to say, I was quite impressed. They had gotten a washrag out, got it wet and wiped the whole counter and put all the little extra pieces of playdoh in the garbage can!

They never cease to amaze me! I think the playdoh might actually make an appearance more than once every 6 months now!

Monday, February 22, 2010


holy experience

I have to admit, as my list gets longer, it's hard to find new things to be thankful about. That's maybe why I only post a list every few weeks. It's easy for me to look around the house and I'm thankful for everything in it as well as the house. I'm thankful for food on my table each day, for my husband, my children, health. The basic things that everyone notices. But what about all the stuff in between those things. All the little moments, all the smiles, the tears, teaching moments, bad weather, things that have turned my schedule and plans upside down. This is something I need to work on.

Here are some of the things that I have been thankful for the last few weeks.

310~ hearing Isaac sing in the shower

311~ clean and organized closets

312~ wool hearts that my aunt brought over for the kids for Valentine's Day made from wool from a coat of my mom's

313~ brownie hearts for a special Valentine's treat

314~ snowballs and watching the joy in my children's face as they throw them at eachother

315~ holding a tiny baby in nursery that reminded me of how small my children were when they were babies

316~ the treadmill, so I can still run without having to go outside in the cold

317~ watching Isaac help his dad

318~ watching Brad play cops and robbers with the kids

It is good to give thanks to the Lord. Psalm 92:1

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Book Reviews

I love to read. Well, I do now anyway. When I was in school I hated to read. I think I just didn't like people telling me what to read. Since my days of school I have found that I really do love it. Before I got married I remember nights that I would stay up until 2 or 3 in the morning. Now I have kids, so midnight is usually my limit.

I usually go in spurts. Lately I've been reading a lot! I'd like to share with you a few of the books that I have recently read that I think all Christians would enjoy reading.

A couple weeks ago I read The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller. In this book he takes a look at the parable of the prodigal son. I think most of us have always looked at this parable in the light of the lost son returning home. Keller takes a look at the younger son, but also takes a look at how the elder son is also lost. He is lost in a way that is way more dangerous because he doesn't realize he is lost. He feels that he has been following the rules his whole life and he is owed his father's love. One quote that I thought summed it up nicely is, "Jesus teaches that the two most common ways to live are both spiritual dead ends. He shows how the plotlines of our lives can only find a resolution, a happy ending, in him, in his person and work." We will never find happiness in the things of the world like the younger brother tried or in following rules like the elder brother was doing. Keller explains it all way better than I ever could, so I definitely suggest reading it.

I also read John Bunyon's Pilgrims Progress retold by Gary Schmidt. It is short and easy to read and Wow! what a great story. It brings you right thru the difficult journey as a Christian with a character named Christian as he journeys from the City of Destruction to the Celestial City. How I would love to share his whole journey with you, I think you would be better reading it on your own. All I can say is I felt like I was right along with him on this journey, really because I am. It really takes a look at how we need to be on the straight and narrow path and how easily we get off that path. It is a great read for young and old alike. I think my kids might be a little young, but I can't wait to share this book with them when they get a little older.

About a month ago I read a book called Crazy Love by Francis Chan. I loved this book! It was one of those books that when I got done with it I wished I could buy a copy for everyone I knew. I have bought a few as gifts already for people and I even bought my husband his own copy. I hope to be reading this book a second time in the next couple weeks. This book will challenge you to love God more fully and more deeply in your life. His chapter called profile of the lukewarm was especially convicting. In this chapter he asks these two questions: "Would you describe yourself as totally in love with Jesus Christ? Or do the words halfhearted, lukewarm, and partially committed fit better?" If you are like me, the second question most definitely fits who I am. If that fits you, then I suggest you get a copy of this book. You can also find out more about the book at

Last night I just finished reading Same Kind of different as me. What an amazing true story about a rich white man and a homeless black man and how God brings them together. Part of this story really hit home for me, but I won't share what part just because I don't want to ruin any part of the book for anyone. I think so many times in life we think that the educated, successful man is the wise man. In this book you will see how God can truly use a man with no education, a man that can't even read, a man that lives on the streets, for a greater purpose. You will see how God really does still work miracles today and you will meet some people who will change your life. I loved the last paragraph in the book, "The truth about it is, whether we is rich or poor or somethin in between, this earth ain't no final restin place. So in a way, we is all homeless--just workin our way toward home." You can also learn more by going to

If you decide to pick any of these books up and read them I'd love to hear back from you on what you thought.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Frugal Friday

I have goals in life.

They may not be that exciting or that big...................but I do have goals.

One of our local grocery stores prints on the bottom of your receipt the percentage of your grocery bill that you have saved between shopping sales and using coupons. Most the time my percentage of savings is in the upper 30's and low 40's.

My goal has been to get to 50%! I know, I know. A silly goal, but it is one of mine.

This week I reached this goal TWO TIMES!

If you look on these reciepts you can see that in the first reciept I spent $49.09 and saved 50% and a total of $49.55. In the second receipt you can see that I spent $3.65 and saved 58% and a total of $5.02.

Is it sad that this is one of the most exciting things in my life?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Snow Days

My poor children have more of an inside mom than one that likes to be outdoors. That is why at this point they have not gone sledding yet and up until this past week they had only been out to play in the snow a couple times.

We got a lot of snow this week, enough to make me go out and shovel. So my kids got to go out and play. They've actually been outside the last 3 days! Here are some of our playing in the snow pictures.

After we are all done in the snow we head inside for some hot chocolate and a cookie. The kids love to drink it out of their special cups which are actually little tea cups that used to be my Grandma's.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

My Little Painters

I was downloading pictures from my camera when I found these.

Brad must have taken them when he was priming the bathroom.

If you have a husband that does anything in construction, you know that your own house is usually the last to get done. After they helped him in the garage and now in the bathroom, I'm thinking in a few years these boys will know what they are doing and I'll be able to get my house painted whenever I want. Woo-hoo!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Saturday Fun

My Brother-in-law and sister-in-law are expecting their first child in about a month, a little girl. Today was their baby shower and I was able to take my girls with to attend their first shower.
They were so excited!
Here is Alex and Amanda with their Uncle Bryan and Aunt Ashley.

And here they are with their Grandma.

For their first shower they were put right to work.

They were put in charge of garbage.

They were rewarded for their help though with a little gift bag with a coloring book, crayons, candy and a puzzle. They also got to take a lot of balloons home. So now our house looks like this.

We had a fun time and I am so thankful to be able to do these things with my daughters.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

296 ~ a bracelet made for me by Joshua

297 ~ piggy back rides

298 ~ watching my girls stumble out of their rooms every morning half awake in their robes and slippers

299 ~ all the different expressions Isaac gets on his face when he has to tell me something

300 ~ a good report from Isaac's eye Dr. and no change in his rx for now, meaning I don't have to buy new glasses

301 ~ smiles

302 ~ dimples

303 ~ lunch with my sisters

304 ~ Joshua's flower blooming

305 ~ chocolate shakes

306 ~ nice man at Aldi who gave me his cart

307 ~ paychecks

308 ~ Isaac's help with the dishes (and yes, I do feed him, he is just that skinny!)

309 ~ water (drinking water, running water, shower water)