Wednesday, December 31, 2008
SO, we love our new church, the people there are wonderful, the Pastor and his wife are such a blessing and the Asst Pastor and his wife...also, SUCH a blessing. They have gone out of our way to make us feel loved and welcome. The Asst Pastor and his wife invited us over to their house for dessert one Sunday Evening and we accepted, of course, but I am always just a little bit nervous about how the kids will do. Swallowing my pride, I asked the Lord to bless our time of fellowship...and whatever that would entail. Well, soon after we get into the door, Lily and Anjolie both need to use the restroom *sigh* you would have thought I JUST made them drink like two canteens of water or something! So, while Anjolie is "going" as fast as she can, Lily can't wait and has an accident on the bathroom floor...*sigh* yep, she did. SO, the graceful lady gets me a pair of her daughter's undies for Lily to use, I clean up the mess and with a deep breath try to just shake it off. Okay, not so bad, these things happen, right? We had a wonderful time of fellowship, dessert and coffee. I felt pretty good that I was able to "move on" from that so quickly instead of just wanting to, you know, DIE. That was soon to be followed by episode 2...why can't my episodes, like the movies, get less and less interesting???
The next week we are invited to the Pastor's house for lunch after church. I was so excited to get to talk to them more and tried to shrug off the sense of foreboding that hung over me about the kids not being....well, miniature little adults that can sit perfectly still and quiet for 2 hours or more and quite honestly...make me look good- as a mom-THERE I said it. "Ding ding ding...Heather has NAILED her pride issue on the head...what does the lucky lady GET?" said my best gameshow host voice...
Just a sec...you know what is SO BAD...I KNOW you all are just GIDDY to know *gasp* "WHAT DID THEY DO???" Hahaha...it's okay I'd be like that too HAHAHA
"Okay, Bob, Heather has just won..... a second helping of humiliation!!!" *canned applause erupts*
Let me just set the stage by explaining how immaculate and beautiful this dear Pastor and wife's home was decorated...just beautfiul. Tasteful nick-nacks, scented candles, flowers....quaint charming corners. It was just beautiful. Pastor loves to hunt, so he had some deer mounted...it was just picturesque. Dinner went well until Ayden got a dribble of water on his pants, so I excused myself and him to change his pants since he wouldn't tolerat the Tablespoonful offensive wet spot. Ayden had just finished potty training, so I went to the car to get the diaper bag which had an extra outfit and undies. When I got to the car I saw that we had left said bag at the nursery for the evening service ( I GUESS that was the idea, it was Brian's fault of course ;) ). I toted Ayden back in and assured him his pants would dry just fine. Ayden distracted himself with the corner of toys Mrs Pastor had arranged while I helped serve dessert. We had a wonderful time sharing stories and talking over dessert and coffee when I realized that Ayden had been quiet for a few minutes. I walked to where he should have been and when I didn't see him, turned to see him exiting the hallway which leads to the bathroom..... Now, I did say Ayden was finished potty training...but he still needs HELP especially with the latter of the #s. Ayden sauntered toward me with NO PANTS and NO UNDIES on ...holding hands out that were covered in aforementioned latter #.... I think that at that moment I thought I was going to die, but when I scooped him up and saw the beautiful little lavendar bathroom with the scented candle burning it's little heart out amidst the stench and freshly "painted" walls...I think, yeah, I did, I died in some way in that moment. Ayden had not "made" all of "it" in the toilet ...for instance, some was on the cute little lavender rug on the floor, some was on the seat and then it looked as if he had stepped in "it" and then attempted to wipe it off his feet with his hands and then attempted to wipe his hands by, I don't know, using the whole roll of toilet paper and then the wall with varying degrees of artistic talent and technique....perhaps in that order but maybe not. I, stuffed my heart back down my throat where it lodged itself for the remainder of the day, and in a pool of sweat, while dodging Ayden's dirty little hands, cleaned up the best I could with a towel I found under the sink. I stuffed Ayden's soiled undies....IN HIS POCKET for lack of any other place...and proceeded to try and whisk my family out of that poor home as quickly as possible. On our way out, and to my absolute horror, Pastor lovingly swoops the much needing a bath Ayden up to touch a deer he has mounted on the wall...my eyes willlllllled that underwear to just HANG IN THERE as I saw a corner peeking out of his pocket. I could barely brrreath...as I am sure you can imagine. My friends, have you EVER!!!!????? I did not want to embarrass Brian in front of Pastor so I called Mrs Pastor on my cell soon after we left so that she could properly clean the bathroom. I think I got everything but the smell...and that blessed little candle will probably NEVER be the same. Yeah, to my regret...we lived through it...not sure how I could have an ounce of pride left after that little gem, but I'm sure you will hear the next time I do!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Let me at least leave you with an update :) My sister, Misty got married and all 4 of the kids were in the wedding hahaha...yeah, it went fine. I hope I can post pics within like the next month or so. So, the plan was to travel up for the wedding and be back for Brianna's performance in her Patch the Pirate play. On the way back, I learned that my Aunt who has been battling cancer and whom I have asked prayer for on occasion here, had stopped chemo and hospice was caring for her at her home. My mom told me that my Aunt was down to eating ice chips...so, we re-packed and headed back to Ohio (almost 10 hours but totally worth it) so that I could see my Aunt. I had called my Uncle the night before to let him know I was coming....she passed away before I could get there. My heart just broke, but it was amazing how everything was worked out- Brian had already requested leave for the whole week...he was going to clean out the garage and do some other errands...but apparently the Lord knew I would need to be with my family. Gas prices had dropped tremendously so traveling was no concern...we were able to spend Thanksgiving with my family and be a support (I hope) to them...and the kids did not mind the trip at all. In fact, they cheered when I told them we would have to load back up in the morning and travel back...God is so good. So, please pray for my Uncle Steve...this is going to be a very difficult holiday season for him...his bride is in glory and he will be missing her terribly until he makes his heavenly flight.
Friday, October 03, 2008
This move and just life in general has held trial after trial in which I can see blessing after blessing-the blessings have been overwhelming, to be honest. We are still enduring some trials and even in these trials, I see the Lord's purpose and provision, so why do I allow undisciplined thoughts to rage against what I know in my heart to be true? It is frustrating to suffer troubled feelings because I have given in to angry thoughts-which I justify because it would seem I have a "right" to be angry for myself and my "suffering". You know, I might have the "right" by the world's standards, but the Lord in His wisdom has allowed these sufferings and if I don't respond in my heart the way my head (in reminding me of the Word) tells me too- with longsuffering and patience, I am only hurting myself. I am choosing to suffer that "trouble" which He has spared me. His Word ever reminds me of His love and care, His Grace, His mercy and His attempts to comfort me with His promises of never leaving or forsaking me have been thwarted with my resolve to "dip in" to the angry thoughts that I think I have a right to. "Oh, just a few indulging thoughts followed by how good God is to me shouldn't cause to much damage" I think to myself. Well, now here I sit in a beautiful garden, of sorts, not really being able to enjoy the beauty for the brambles and thorns I've sown. These lessons are so hard, but I am looking forward to practicing Philippians 4:6-9 and experiencing the fulness of His joy so that when the rain comes next time, it will stay on the outside...I won't be inviting it into my heart.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
You see, I thought that having the movers put all the boxes in the garage would be a fantastic idea so I wouldn't have the clutter and mess of wall to wall boxes that I so enjoyed in 29 Palms *ahem*. Don't get me wrong, the various broken and damaged items ring up bittersweet memories of "packing day" when we were moving from 29 to Oki *smile*...really. I wouldn't be sad to go back even with the terrible hassle of having to file claims for poorly packed things-*mmm* yeah, let me think on that a while yet.
But anyway, I digress (HA, I always wanted to use that word). The whole stroke-of -genius idea I had about putting the boxes in the garage has left my house so clean that I have to force myself to bring in more than a couple of boxes at a time to unpack. Can you just imagine my 4 little ones in a flurry of paper, tape and bubble wrap...lots and lots of bubble wrap. I know you can-you have read about the antics in the past. *Mess* just doesn't convey the scene after even 2 boxes. And then there is all the STUFF (we had "stuff" in storage too); the kids want to see, touch, and in Ayden's case, taste, chew on EVERYTHING. You never realize how much junk you collect until you MOVE!! We could live with so much less...it's embarrassing really. I guess what I am trying to say is that this whole unpacking thing is going a lot slower than it would have if I were encapsulated in a cardboard palace up to my chin in packing paper. So, that was all, thought I'd share :) buh bye for now.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Well people, after our 10 days in a hotel, living life flipped upside down and backwards since our days and nights were switched from being on Okinawa time, we spent a month with my family up in Ohio. It was such a nice break and definitely helpful since we would not be receiving any household goods for a good month. They don't have internet so I couldn't update you all on what a fun time we were having...sorry!! We did have fun and enjoyed all the conveniences like Wallymart and Chick-fil-@. I bought a really good hair straighter at the Ohio State Fair-who da thunk it?! We had a family get-together po-folk style which was a real hoot. But my favorite times were the ones spent laying on a vintage quilt under a big shade tree reading books and eating cucumbers, bonfires under the stars, watching my Dad take the kids for rides on his mower, enjoying the beautiful flowers around my parents yard, catching toads with the kids, planting a tree at almost midnight, staying up late to catch my brother after work so we could have time to talk and catch up, watching Phelps win his gold medals with my feet propped up on my husband's lap just enjoying his time off from work, helping my sister try on wedding dresses, long talks with my mom, hearing my dad laughing and playing with the kids and hearing their feet patter to the door when he would come home from work ...there are really too many to list. *sigh* It was time much needed.
So much has happened in this move...the good and the challenging and the incredibly challenging and the incredible blessings...all of it I know works to the Lord's good. It has all been such a whirlwind and at the same time because of our circumstances, I have had a lot of time to devote to reading the Bible...lots of time spent in prayer, lots of time to deal with looking at heart issues. There's nothing like being ALONE, really alone, and to be able to allow the Lord to put things in perspective. The Word is truly like a mirror -the kind that shows it ALL...ich. I really get on my nerves after a while :D...no, seriously, I just want to smack myself sometimes. I am so thankful to have my internetty back to distract me for just little smidgens (HA) of time so I can, you know, break up the time I have to spend with myself...and my childrens ;)
And with that I will get back to work. What a horrible first post back from the virtual dead! *blush* Ugh, maybe if I get some of these boxes unpacked, I will be able to get my head uncluttered and write something worth glancing at! Anyway, love you all and I look forward to catching up!
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
"I can't be afraid of suffering"-that spoke to my heart of hearts-so convicting.
I love and miss you-please pray as moving is always difficult for the children (and for me!). Anjolie broke down after church this past Sunday and said, "I knew this day was coming, but *sob* I miss Pastor...I would always go give him a hug and say hi on my way to choir practice..." then she got me going-right there in Olive Garden we had ourselves a little cry over the churches we have had the blessing of being a part of...it is so hard to leave church family, but it is neat how our church family is just growing :) what a reunion it will be in Glory huh?
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Another prayer request please, there is a typhoon coming which could really put us in a bind for lodging since our reservations are at the beach...and every other place is completely booked-PCS (perm change of station) season. And, oh yeah, did I mention I am terribly afraid of flying? So without further ado, I will go back to packing and cleaning and you know, all that fun stuff involved with moving :) Thank you so very much for your prayers...they mean the world to me.
Monday, July 14, 2008
We had a potluck this past Sunday (our yesterday) after church, and Bro. Matt agreed to join us :) Our children were thrilled to meet him - and proceeded to just chat his poor ear off...you know, the whole 20,000 who, what, where, why question thing that kids do to people. I am so glad he brought his camera and took some pictures because last Sunday my battery died and this Sunday, the memory card was left in it's port on my printer *ahem* ...but Matt had prepared by bringing his own...I AM blonde after all and susceptible to lapses in intelligence (hahahahaha), so, when we get his pics, I will post them. ETA- I got them!! Thank you Brother! :)
What a precious couple they are and so loved by the Lord...what a blessing to be able to cross paths with them in such a unique way. God is so good and there is so much more I would like to say about this "encounter" with the Lord's work, but I honestly can't comprehend what all the Lord was *doing* in all this...I am just left in awe of Him. Please pray for them as they will be reunited very VERY soon! I am SO excited for them!! Please stop by her blog and let her know you will pray for safe flights for both of them. Thank you!
Friday, July 11, 2008
We are in the process of selling our van, and I was on the phone this morning with a prospective buyer, when I heard a knock at the door. "Oh, yeah!.." I remembered, "the movers are coming to take a quick inventory of household goods"! It was NOT a good time-I had a friend due to come in an hour so we could finish making baby shower invitations, Brianna was still in the process of getting dressed for a culture class that she was taking (today was the last day) so I shooed her into her room to finish, Lily was in her swim suit and some dress-up shoes since I told the girls we would go to the pool today...so I shooed her to get some clothes on....I have no idea what Anjolie was doing, and Ayden, well, he stood at the door waiting to see who was knocking. I quickly explained to the inquirer on the phone that I would need to call her back, the crazy moment just seemed like toooo much seeing as how it wasn't even 9am yet. So, I opened the front door to let one of the Japanese movers in and let him stand in the entry-way while I got off the phone. Ayden looked up at the man, who was waiting patiently with his clipboard, squatted down to jump and announced "I POOPED!...I pooped!" with each little hop, in the sweetest little 2 year old voice you ever heard, like it was good news or some new thing...I almost dropped the phone I was so mortified. I didn't even try to apologize, it was just one.of.those.moments I swooped up the stinky little guy-not sure what I said to the caller as I hung up with her, and left the poor Japanese man who was rolling over the english in his mind translating it to Japanese, I'm sure, as I mentally pressed *delete delete* in desperation...the rest is a blur...so yeah, the whole movin' thing...it's goin'
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
- okay that satirical tid-bit about our tendencies in Church made me chuckle. They put their children in school and we home school, they have shorter hair and we have longer hair, they bottle feed and we nurse, they are new Christians and we are mature Christians...you get the idea. Why do we have that tendency to make everything a we/they thing? People are either for us or against us-in our minds-I am most always mistaken when I, in my mind accuse someone of being "against" me. ( I am NOT talking about the approval of sin issues btw). If we are born-again believers....it is always WE -and WE should always be looking to Christ, before whom we will one day stand and give account . It is He who sees ALL and is always on our side when we are living for Him :)
*quote taken from On Being A Servant of God by Warren W. Wiersbe pg 49
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Monday, July 07, 2008
As a 1930s wife, I am
As a 1930s husband, I am
I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July!
Here are some pics from the past week.
One of our family's favorite places to eat with the kids is the "Globe and Anchor" ....the kids call it the "Golden Ankle" :) I took some pics since this is probably the last time we will eat there before we move.
Daddy gets silly with the kids.
Ayden loooooves his daddy! He likes to squeeze daddy's face and say "chubbo chubbo dada" :)
Brian had duty on the 4th, so I took the kids to the "Americafest"...Anjolie took this just loooovely pic of me driving..and driving...it took a little bit for me to find it, and when we did, they had a full security area to search bags, walk through metal detectors and check ID cards before entering since it was at the Airforce flight-line. It was quite the adventure getting through that with the 4 little ones. I think I was ready to just call it a day at that point ha!
See that little guy sitting in the pic down there? If you look closely, you can see his busted little lip. He fell at the playground this past week and had to have 3 stitches under his lip, poor little guy had to have an IV and be put under sedation for it...but ANYWAY...that was a whole other ordeal that I would just rather not revisit...
It turned out to be soooooooo sweltering hot at the Americafest that I just got the kids a treat once we got through the whole security ordeal and we left....their faces were flushed with heat within moments of arriving. I was afraid of what would happen if I let them go jumping around the bounce house in that heat! There wasn't too much complaint from the kids about leaving, I think they were kinda glad-especially when they felt the AC in the van!
After taking some much needed naps, we went to a BBQ which was alot of fun...I love times of fellowsip. We were able to watch fireworks right from this park which was across the street from my friends house. We all really had a good time. Sorry you could not be there honey-we sure missed you :(
Friday, July 04, 2008
....as you watch the fireworks, enjoy family and friends, please take a moment to remember the real "fireworks" going on over "there"...remember those left behind missing their loved ones...remember that this is a difficult time for those who have served in Iraq-they are forever changed. Pray for the brave wives left with little ones to care for and who leave their pillows wet with prayer filled tears...I know that you will remember them today as you wave your flags with pride. They so appreciate our prayers and love.
I know you will remember, most of all, our Saviour who paid the ultimate price for us...who bore the sin for us all on the cross of Calvary. We celebrate our freedom, yes, but it was not without the ultimate cost. Let's remember the price that was paid by our Saviour...Praise the Lord, it is a work complete!
Saturday, June 28, 2008
It is ever the Holy Spirit's work to turn our eyes away from self to Jesus; but Satan's work is just the opposite of this, for he is constantly trying to make us regard ourselves instead of Christ. He insinuates, "Your sins are too great for pardon; you have no faith; you do not repent enough; you will never be able to continue to the end; you have not the joy of His children; you have such a wavering hold of Jesus." All these are thoughts about self, and we shall never find comfort or assurance by looking within. But the Holy Spirit turns our eyes entirely away from self: He tells us that we are nothing, but that "Christ is all in all." Remember, therefore, it is not thy hold of Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not thy joy in Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not even faith in Christ, though that be the instrument—it is Christ's blood and merits; therefore, look not so much to thy hand with which thou art grasping Christ, as to Christ; look not to thy hope, but to Jesus, the source of thy hope; look not to thy faith, but to Jesus, the author and finisher of thy faith. We shall never find happiness by looking at our prayers, our doings, or our feelings; it is what Jesus is, not what we are, that gives rest to the soul. If we would at once overcome Satan and have peace with God, it must be by "looking unto Jesus." Keep thine eye simply on Him; let His death, His sufferings, His merits, His glories, His intercession, be fresh upon thy mind; when thou wakest in the morning look to Him; when thou liest down at night look to Him. Oh! let not thy hopes or fears come between thee and Jesus; follow hard after Him, and He will never fail thee.
"My hope is built on nothing less
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
A blonde calls her boyfriend and says, "Please come over here and help me.I have a killer jigsaw puzzle, and I can't figure out how to get it started." Her boyfriend asks, "What is it supposed to be when it's finished?" The blonde says, "According to the picture on the box, it's a tiger." Her boyfriend decides to go over and help with the puzzle. She lets him in and shows him where she has the puzzle spread all over the table. He studies the pieces for a moment, then looks at the box, then turns to her and says, "First of all, no matter what we do, we're not goingto be able to assemble these pieces into anything resembling a tiger." He takes her hand and says, "Second, I want you to relax. Let's have a nice cup of tea, and then ..." he sighed, (scroll down)
"let's put all these Frosted Flakes back in the box !"
Monday, June 23, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Do you see the beautiful apron Pam made me??? (Don't look at me...you're lucky I just got over myself and allowed these to even be posted ;) )You can get a better look at the tatting (the lace) she did by hand on her site. I LOVE it :)
I made a sand-castle cake from rice crispie treats ;) I used brown sugar for the "sand" and cones for the spires. The blue icing was supposed to be like the water ;) I wasn't super pleased with it, but it did taste good and Brianna loved it.
As for my cake, that Brian surprised me with on the way home, Brian missed the moment of me actually blowing out the candle...so I had to "pretend" which felt pretty ridiculous. Look at Brianna and Lily "helping" me
keep my lips pursed hahahaha...
Saturday, June 21, 2008
John 14:13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
So, after reading a few of your blogs about your struggles with weight, I figure I will share mine. Don't laugh (those that know me) I would like to lose the 8 pounds ( that's just my preference, as it is my pre- 4 babies in 4.5 years weight), but I have noticed that every time I cut back on food, I gain weight. Food, in my case-and in many others, I suspect, is not the problem, it is a lack of exercise and failing to drink enough water (preferably distilled). The key is, when I exercise more, I shouldn't eat more. I think I am also experiencing some insulin resistance-so cutting back on sugar specifically is a must. This article was very helpful in understanding what is going on in my body and why the usual "shock" remedies aren't working for me.
Here's the plan: I am going to cut back on sugar, increase my water intake, continue eating the way I have been, which is honestly pretty healthy and mainly up the exercise-30 min cardio (elliptical machine)a day and 10 min high rep weight lifting(using bands) to get things moving smoothly and an ab work out once a week, which will relieve stress and flush my body of toxins which in turn will keep my metabolism up. As far as fluctuating hormones tripping things up, I take Evening Primrose Oil, Calcium, Supermom vitamins and use a progesterone cream to help. Everyone's body is different so what works for one doesn't necessarily work for someone else!
Finally, the Lord wants us to be healthy and keep our bodies functioning at its best so I ask Him to guide me in the right direction when it comes to weight as I tend to go overboard if I do get into losing weight. When I have asked Him concerning the children and their health, it is amazing how He leads (concerning food dye sensitivities and such)! I will keep you updated!
In 34 years I have learned:
Frowning makes wrinkles
So does smiling
All those years of eating whatever I wanted without so much as a dimple are starting to pay me back...with interest (okay, it's not THAT bad, but I def. have to watch what I eat now)
Everyone wants to feel special
Children can see right through a hypocritical attitude
The very thing that you criticize someone else's child for...your child will do
Kids are very very very messy
Boys like gross things ( don't need to elaborate do I?)
Childish things may be annoying but not necessarily wrong
I'm not training up children to be pleasing to others, I'm training them up to want to be pleasing to God
My mom was right when she said the blue eye shadow looked guady and lots of other things which have resulted in the destruction of the evidence of such "what was I thinking" moments (ie pictures)
My prediction of bell bottoms never making a true come-back was accurate
My prediction of pegged bottom pants never going "out" was sorely wrong
"Jelly" shoes make your feet stink
Organization makes me happy
My house must be clean but it's not perfect and this is okay!
The key to a clean house is to clean as I go (only blog when the kids are sleeping riiiiight)
Embarrassing moments are what life is made of-especially with kids
The key to a good friendship is listening more than talking
Most offences are not worth even a second thought
It's not about me
If I think of a small thoughtful deed...I need to do it right away
Someone is always watching
Chocolate is my friend
PMS stands for Press Mouth Shut for the duration of the irrational hormonal roller coaster
Finding the funny side of a situation will save me from having a heart attack-this is what I tell myself
A simple smile can make someone's day
Nobody cares if I'm right and they're wrong
People don't want a solution to their problem, they want a listening ear
Time is wasted when it's not planned out
Most blessings are found when I am willing to step out of my comfort zone
I love people :) All types...I genuinely enjoy them
Loving my husband means overlooking his shortcomings
Making my husband happy comes before making others happy-including my children
Well, unfortunately, I have learned that deeply jealous people are dangerous and should be avoided
It has never benefited me to worry about something I have no control over
A good hug, a gentle touch to the arm, a squeeze to the hand-goes alot further than any word
God is always the same and is always good
A Good friend is truly a gift from the Lord
(having some major blogger quirk issues)
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I wish I had a picture from last week of the *entire* box of Kix that Ayden was able to dump in the .23 seconds that I left his side to put away a step-stool which more often than not is his trusty side kick in all his mischievous attempts and successes. Yes,he was able to grab the bottom of the newly opened box and as he pulled it, it toppled alllll over the floor. He was just delighted and did a little "smashy the Kix" dance as I scrambled for my new vac (which I hate *sob* but the other one gave up a couple of weeks after Ayden cleaned out the toilet with it). It was quite the mess. But I can laugh now!
Monday, June 09, 2008
David believes he can meditate and work his way to heaven. My friend Alice ,a missionary to the Japanese, explained a bit more of his beliefs to me and again the magnitude of what the Lord does here on earth to reveal truth overwhelmed me. Nothing is more affirming of the Lord's work in people's lives than soul-winning. It is unexplainable and far beyond my understanding. Anyway, David has been deceived into thinking that his religion is ancient and dates before the Bible and therefore must be the truth. The lies of Satan reach in every direction don't they?
Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
Gal 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
David was one of the many that Alice and I handed a tract to last Thursday... we saw mostly Japanese. Most Okinawans are either Shinto in belief or Buddhist . My missionary friend Alice was able to speak with many of them- which is such a blessing to witness! Alice amazes me :) I love when we go together in search of those who will listen. We met all types, the polite, the indifferent, the rude...one Japanese man called after Alice sarcastically in Japanese..."Oh, God will only help me AFTER I accept Him...AFTER". Yes, my Japanese friend, all things become new *after*...just as marriage is offered AFTER acceptance of a relationship, there is an acceptance and a giving of one's self to the would be groom-it is an agreement, a covenant, not some happenstance it is not a slavery- it is a choice.
The old man's chuckle followed us to the next group of lost souls...Japanese youth, still in uniform and giddy. One boy looked interested in what Alice was sharing, but the rest joked and laughed. I prayed for clarity and understanding as Alice spoke-she asked me to pray that she would "think in Japanese" to better explain the Gospel. She finished by asking them to read the tracts she had distributed, and we walked on down Gate 2 street as we had only a short time remaining. One of the boys Alice had just spoken with, probably encouraged by his peers, raced loudly passed us as we walked, he tagged a pole in front of us and then raced back to the cheers of his friends, Alice calmly looked at me and said, "He's showing off" which just tickled me for some reason. "Well, he is", she said, in the same matter of fact voice, *chuckle*. I can't wait until I can share more with you about Alice! Her testimony points to what an Amazing God we serve.
As we distributed tracts, Alice continued to handle the Japanese and I handled the Americans who were mostly GIs out to hit the bars and clubs on Gate 2 street. Jesse was the last person I had time to speak with before meeting back with my husband and heading back to church. Jesse was a young GI of not more than 25 years of age and when I began speaking with him, his breath was heavy with the smell of alcohol and a sarcastic grin played at his mouth. After some small talk and a turned down invitation to visit our church, he allowed me to share the Gospel with him. When I concluded, it was clear he was convinced I was just trying to push "religion" on him. He was "spiritual, not religious", he informed me...did he even know what that meant? Probably not-I have heard this many times.
The scripture I pointed out to Jesse in hopes of him allowing it to penetrate the darkness he was in, fell on dead ears and blind eyes, only the Lord really knows what was going through his mind as I looked into his blue eyes..glazed over due to the affects of at least alcohol -but who knows what else he was laced with to better deaden him to any truth offered. This night was fought over in the spiritual realm long before Alice and I came on the scene. He probably prided himself on having an "open mind" since he shared that the Bible was created by Kings to "control" the people- "wisdom" from the god of this world blinding his eyes to keep him on the path of destruction. Rather than argue the lies he had been fed, I just kept sharing the Truth-I would not be tempted down the dead end road to which arguing against lies leads. I would step over each lie and offer the Word in its place. The darts of discouragement burned as they hit my heart-he would not *hear*. I offered a few more "pearls" before I retreated in one last hope of the WORD being received which could cause the scales to fall from his eyes.
Dear lost soul, in the end, it is not your spirituality that saves you- or your religion...it is your trust and belief on the Lord Jesus Christ...only He can regenerate the heart dead in sin, but it is a concious choice to respond to the Holy Spirit. Finally, "That is your belief" J. dismissed me with, "I'm just along for the ride...then I'll see what the next life brings". I was silenced by this frightening remark delivered so casually after just sharing with him what the Bible says about his lost state...my heart sank as I gazed upon the seed that fell on the wayside (or appeared to) and was trodden down...the fowls of the air, or his preconceived false ideas plucked up the precious seed and left him standing unchanged-for now. The Lord did remind me though, that His Word will not return void which filled me with hope (in hindsight). I thanked Jesse for listening and prayed that the Lord would send another sower and prepare the ground for the seed or the water if Jesse read the tract and perhaps thought back on the Word that was shared.
In the end, the lost all say the same thing, I will go my OWN WAY, I will cling to MY OWN god of this world. If I choose to think on it, in a negative sense it really depresses me- to basically hear the same thing over and over-different words, same truth- "I will go my own way". They are lost and rejecting Christ- they will blindly follow a lie to destruction because they have turned away the Light. It makes me sick inside, to see so many who will not hear, but at the same time, I am urged to keep sharing in this knowledge: the Bible says the fields are white already to harvest. The days when the Lord allows us to reap...oh the JOY...but sow, we must, until He returns. This verse was key to my understanding our labor in the fields: John 4:38 I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.
It is the Lord allowing us the BLESSING to reap where others have labored! Along with our sowing and watering...yes, there will come reaping! When I think about that, I feel the obligation and better understand the commandment to share the Gospel. We enter into "fields", not our own and I think of those Believers who have DIED sowing and watering and here I am afraid to risk reaping?! How is it that my heart so quickly grows indifferent to the commandment to GO or even just to open my mouth when the Lord drops them in my lap, so to speak? Again, Eph 6:19...let it be my prayer for the rest of this life. We need to share the Gospel because there are many like David and Jesse who believe a lie... 110%.
Choose to be burdened for the lost. 2Cr 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Friday, June 06, 2008
Thursday, June 05, 2008
or getting ready for church...there is never a dull moment....and recording it here has just become a part of my life. I look forward to sharing a glimpse of our day to day with you. Through the good and the bad, my prayer is that our love for the Lord will shine through. I know you HAVE to see His grace ;) what with all our little adventures and such LOL-it is only by His Grace that I can laugh and cry and continue on!
Also, it seems that from most of your comments that you think I got offended and went stomping off....not.at.all. I just wanted to address something that had been on my heart from the beginning of blogging and since I didn't know when or really if I'd be able to get another one going, I wanted to encourage you to reach out to the *obscure* blogger, or the one who is struggling, and encourage them when they share their heart-the broken part. Since I have had my bloggy feelins hurt...I know many others had and it really helps to be encouraged after you have shown your heart on something so public as a blog. Don't just be a sunny day friend-stick by when the rain comes too.
So, I guess for now, nothing has changed, Brian can't part with the blog...and I can't say he really twisted my arm either. I have a hard time quitting anything! You don't know how many mental notes I made to blog about...and then I was like "oh, yeah,...that's on hold for now".
Anyway...I hope you will have me back into my old bloggy community until my stuff gets packed out and we are on our way :) Purty Please?
Thursday, May 29, 2008
A "I probably shouldn't, I'm just tired, and emotional but I'm gonna do it anyway" post.
PCS, or Permanent Change of Station is coming quickly. The time will soon arrive that we will be leaving beautiful Okinawa. Sometime in July, we will board a plane with all our memories and about 3 years of age and head back to the U.S. with a very slim chance of ever returning. It will be very difficult to say goodbye to the Church we have called home since Aug 29th of 05. It has been such a blessing. I am slowly surrendering my ministries and some are to a dear friend whose husband will replace mine as a deacon when we leave. My feelings are bittersweet. God has allowed us to run hard and strong in the midst of trials and difficulties...He has so strengthened us in the way and I look forward (with some nervousness) to what He has ahead of us.
Yes, this may be the end of "Just Laugh" seeing as how I started it to keep our friends and family updated on our lives across the ocean. I love the friends I have made on here and I do plan to keep in touch. I may start a new blog when we get settled in the states...I'm just not sure about that yet as I have shared an awful lot of info on here because we were outside of the US...we'll see what happens.
And, this, is difficult to share. It has been a challenge to discern what to share on blogger here...I don't think a blog truly paints an accurate picture(maybe I'm wrong?), but for me, I would start to write some things about our ministry here and many other things to round out what comes across my blogger image...and it just felt like it would come across as boasting. I don't think that anyone else is boasting when they share about what the Lord is accomplishing in their lives, their talents the blessings in their family...I guess I am aware of the painful fact that pride lurks around every corner in my life-even in that statement itself. Anyway, since I feel led to exclude many things that could have lent to stumbling on my part, it seems as though who I really am is not coming through. In my attempt to be *real*, in recording my thoughts and struggles...ideas, convictions and some lacking ones... I have had my feelings hurt, I am ashamed to admit, when I feel that I am rejected by other bloggers. We ladies have a sly way of showing our approval and our rejection of one another...let's be honest-I believe we even fool ourselves most times. We know when it's done to others and have a pretty good idea when it's done to us and honestly, we just have to love one another anyway :) I have gone back and read comments I made and had to recant...I have been less than gracious a few times I am sure. I praise the Lord for those who overlook my faults. It is truly a show of Christ like love when you *stick around* even when you don't see eye to eye on everything....when you see a besetting sin the Lord is working out, when you don't share the same convictions... I know we don't have time to get around to everyone's blog :) I'm not talking about that...I certainly don't get to visit everyone that I would like to...I go long periods of not being able to blog or visit, but I purpose to encourage each one of you that I can, I love you and care about you...I pray for you.
Thankfully, many of you know me personally and can see more of the true picture with all its faults and blessings as well. :) I have had to repent of accusing in my heart, as well....I know I am just a faulty human and I am never to be offended-as I am crucified with Christ, but in my flesh, I have been angered and upset when I see others judged and *ousted* by one another in the blogosphere and offended myself as well (not that it doesn't happen in real life). Praise the Lord it is only a fleeting thing and repented of immediately, but it is worth mentioning that ladies know when they are being rejected and it is discouraging. Let's be sensitive to one another. Okay, off my soapbox that rings of lingering self-pity and a touch of resentment, I'm afraid.
So, because I stumble in many ways, I will sum up our ministry here with this: it has been such a blessing a priviledge to learn and serve at Maranatha...I am so humbled...so blessed. What I do want to do is lift up the Lord-He not only sees the big picture, HE KNOWS our hearts. He has blessed and I do want to unashamedly thank the Lord for a godly husband who has so faithfully served His Lord and Savior amidst many a trial. He has taught and trained his children faithfully, been patient with me, had faith in me to be his helpmeet...held my hand in prayer...made me so proud to be his bride. As tempted as I am to share more, ...it still seems I trying to somehow be *approved*.
Please pray for us as we have much to do in preparation to leave. It is especially difficult right now because Brian is tied up with school and we still have lots of loose ends to tie up. Please pray for Maranatha Baptist Church as well-since this is PCS season...they are losing alot of faithful servants-pray for more laborers to carry on the ministry to the military and Japanese here on Okinawa. Love you my friends!
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
(To the church of Ephesus, a famous church planted by the apostle Paul (Acts 19))
"I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have [somewhat] against thee, because thou hast left thy first love."
Matthew Henry wrote..."Those that have lost their first love must remember whence they have fallen; they must compare their present with their former state, and consider how much better it was with them then than now, how much peace, strength, purity, and pleasure they have lost, by leaving their first love,—how much more comfortably they could lie down and sleep at night,—how much more cheerfully they could awake in the morning,—how much better they could bear afflictions, and how much more becomingly they could enjoy the favours of Providence,—how much easier the thoughts of death were to them, and how much stronger their desires and hopes of heaven." (I added the bold)
edited to say...I'm not in any way trying to be some spiritual giant in this "research"...it's just that chasing bunny trails is so much more fun than say putting away the 3 loads of crumpled up laundry in my linen closet...does that paint a more accurate picture?
Friday, May 23, 2008
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Monday, May 19, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
In addition to regular multivitamins they contain barley grass, alfalfa grass....spirulina and LOTS more. $36 for a 3 month supply!
So apparently this is what was seen in the sky about 10 min before the e/q hit. This site offers some interesting explanations and could serve as an early warnting system. http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/dec05/2367
Of course, God's Word comes to our minds...as both a comfort and as an urging to share the Gospel
Luke 21:11 And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven.
2Pet 3:10-14 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
[Seeing] then [that] all these things shall be dissolved, what manner [of persons] ought ye to be in [all] holy conversation and godliness,Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.
Matt 16:3 And in the morning, [It will be] foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O [ye] hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not [discern] the signs of the times?
The girls are recovering from their HFM just fine, I have a horrible headache and no energy, but other than that we are finally healthy. Yay!
Ayden thinks the tub is a potty...not fun, especially when he has Lily in there with him bbblech-SO not fun.
Brian is at an Advanced Acadamy for Gunnys which means he is up north for most of the week (except for the time I called him in tears and begged him to let me come get him so I could just spend some much needed time with him...yeah, I was frazzled) he comes home for Awanas on Wed and then the weekend.
And, I did a very unwise thing...I stayed til 1:30am talking with a friend of mine who stopped over after the kids were in bed. We had a great time talking and laughing, but I knew 1:30 am was pushing it...then the situation got worse...Ayden woke up at about 1:45am. Oh yeah...and he was *up* until after 3am. Fun times. This is also my team's week to cook the visitation meal and I *need* the energy and wits about me to juggle stuff. Okay, so have a great day :)