Friday, October 31, 2008
One of the things Beth said is this:
"The mystery I will never fully understand is why we would trade God, the only source of genuine satisfaction, for worthless idols that can never satisfy. Yet that transaction calls to you and to me every day of our lives."
I loved this statement. I agree with it. I, too, am a little confused by the truth in it.
It makes me think of what Paul said in Romans 7:15:
"For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate." (ESV)
I am a little encouraged that I am not alone in this. It amazes me how I continue to seek out satisfaction in things - in people, relationships, attention of others, food, and so many other things - that I already know won't give me what I want or need.
I've had moments where I knew God was trying to teach me to depend solely on Him - that there isn't anything else (or anyone else) that can fill my soul. I remember one of those moments came when Elisa was a baby. She was about 5 or 6 months old - and Ricky had very recently been diagnosed with Leukemia. I was trying to stop depending on my relationship with my husband to satisfy my soul, because I had no idea whether or not he'd still be here in a year - and I didn't want to be left entirely devastated. So, then, without even realizing it - I turned to my perfect little baby to fill the empty spaces in me. I would stay awake at night and watch her sleep because I was afraid that if I left her side for a moment that she would stop breathing and my whole world would come apart. She became everything to me - to the exclusion of the One I really needed.
One night, when I was watching Elisa sleep - I began to cry. I was so terrified of losing my husband and daughter that the fear was beginning to consume me. I was beginning to have a hard time functioning normally. I had become crazy overprotective, and was beginning to hate that part of me. I pulled out my Bible and began to read. I started to read through the Psalms and found so many verses that talk about finding my satisfaction in God alone, He alone is God, God alone is my rock and my salvation, and so many more. I was overwhelmed with the understanding that God wanted me to look only to Him to satisfy me. That night I surrendered my husband and my Elisa to Him. I came to understand that God could take them away from me in a split second if He thought it was best and there would be nothing I could do about it. I had to come to grips with the fact that they are not mine at all, but God's - and they will never satisfy the empty parts of me. Only God can do that.
I will never forget that night - I will never forget that moment of surrender. It's been almost 8 years since that night - but I still have to surrender them to God on a regular basis - sometimes even daily. How quickly we return to our old ways. I am so grateful that I know a God who so often and so freely gives grace to those who seek Him.
Jesus, thank You for Your grace today. For Your desire and ability to fill me up in all of my empty places. I pray that today I will look only to You to sustain me. That You alone will be my desire.
"You open Your hand and satisfy the desies of every living thing.
The LORD is righteous in all His ways and loving toward all He has made.
The LORD is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on him in truth.
He fulfills the desires of those who fear Him; He hears their cry and saves them.
The LORD watches over all who love Him, but all the wicked He will destroy.
My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD,
let every creature praise His Holy Name forever and ever!"
Thursday, October 30, 2008
The quote I'm talking about, though is this one...
"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it." I first heard it over 10 years ago in high school drill team. It dramatically changed my life. I have probably quoted it over a hundred times since then - at least. I also about 5 years ago fell in love with Charles Swindoll - his book "The Grace Awakening" especially. I consider him to have had a huge impact on my walk with Christ. I LOVE that the man who has had the most impact on my spiritual walk is responsible for the quote that has had the most significant impact on my character.
I don't know why I never looked it up to see who wrote it - but I am so glad I now know. Here is the whole quote:
"The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude, to me, is more important than facts.
It is more important than the past, than education,
than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes,
than what other people think or say or do.
It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill.
It will make or break a company … a church … a home.
The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day
regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day.
We cannot change our past.
We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way.
We cannot change the inevitable.
The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude …
I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me, and 90% how I react to it.
And so it is with you … we are in charge of our Attitudes.
~ Charles Swindoll
Thanks to Rachel Rowell for the information - it made my day (maybe even my week)
Monday, October 27, 2008
Worms (which Sydney LOVED!):
And for dessert,
Then we tried on costumes...
It was a really fun night. Elisa started the night as a farmer - b/c Syd is a cow. But ended the night as Super Girl - actually she decided she was actually Word Girl. She also wore a scarf around her nose while carving the pumpkin because of the smell. Funny. I also love Maya's expression in the pic w/ all 3 girls - like "what the heck is going on?" Hilarious.
You really have to read it for yourself, but here's a really great snippit:
"Honestly, what must God think of us when we are so unwilling to sit patiently under any blows from His divine hammer and chisel? What can He do through those who complain every time they find themselves temporarily imprisoned by life’s difficulties? Don’t live a bland and tasteless life. Allow God to use the seasoning of hardships to enrich your relationship with Him. The next time you find yourself in a place where your flesh must grow small, learn to like it so that your trust in God can grow big." (Omar C. Garcia, Missions & Evangelism Pastor from Kingsland Baptist Church)
I am reminded of a close friend's "life verse" - John 3:30 says, "He must become greater, I must become less."
I hope this challenges you as much as it did me today.
Weight - 220
Waist - 49
3 pounds lost, but no inches. I did, however, lose a half an inch in my bust and a half an inch in my hips - yeah!!
My clothes are starting to fit a little better - which is really cool.
I did NOT do well with working out this week, though. I also kind of fell of the no soda train a time or two. But for the most part, I'm still plugging along. I've lost 7 pounds total so far - yeah!
How are you guys doing?
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, ‘What does love mean?’
The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined See what you think:
‘When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore.So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.’
Rebecca- age 8
‘When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth.’
Billy - age 4
‘Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.’
Karl - age 5
‘Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.’
Chrissy - age 6
‘Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.’
Terri - age 4
‘Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.’
Danny - age 7
‘Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more.My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss’
Emily - age 8
‘Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.’
Bobby - age 7 (Wow!)
‘If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,’
Nikka - age 6
‘Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.’
Noelle - age 7
‘Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.’
Tommy - age 6
‘During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling.
He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.’
Cindy - age 8
‘My mommy loves me more than anybodyYou don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.’
Clare - age 6
‘Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.’
‘Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.’
Chris - age 7
‘Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.’
Mary Ann - age 4
‘I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones.’
Lauren - age 4
‘When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you.’ (what an image)
Karen - age 7
‘Love is when Mommy sees Daddy on the toilet and she doesn’t think it’s gross.’
Mark - age 6
‘You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.’
Jessica - age 8
And the final one
The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife.Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman’s yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there.When his Mother asked what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said,‘Nothing, I just helped him cry’
Monday, October 20, 2008
I haven't done any measurements - but the scale said 223! Yeah! That's 4 pounds!
I had one soda on Wednesday night and a little bit of soda on Saturday night - but other than that I've done really well with the soda thing. I'm also calorie counting - which is a little time consuming - but I thinkit's pretty worth it.
I walked every day (except Sat & Sun) for at least an hour a day - most days 2hours, and did Pilates on 2 days,too.
I worked really hard this last week trying to change habits - so I'mexcited to see that I've made progress.
Iknow that this upcoming week will be the hard one, though. I'm starting to miss coke and cheesecake & mexican food.
How about everyone else? Wanna share your stats?
Friday, October 17, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.
Anybody have a vacuum that they just LOVE and that has lasted a while?? I'm ready to invest a little more money in one if I know it'll last more than a couple of months. I feel like I'm just throwing money away.
It's making me entirely crazy!! Help!!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Here are our participants - if I've missed anyone, please let me know.
Good luck everyone!!!
Thursday, October 09, 2008
Anyone can enter the contest.
It'll cost $10 per person to enter.
The winner will get a gift card to the location of their choice (with all the entry money).
The contest will start Monday, October 13th - and end Sunday, April 12th (Easter Sunday) - that's about 6 months.
On Monday - we'll weigh in with our starting weights.
SO - Who's in??
Okay guys, here's the dreaded post. I've been debating ever since the last post about whether or not I should post this, and I've finally decided that I should. So here goes..
Weight - 227
Waist - 52"
(I took other measurements too - but figured I don't need to post all of them)
(I took a picture so you'll know I'm not lying :)
My first goal is 199 lbs. (It'll be the first time I'm under 200 in over 9 years!)
I've made a list of all the things I want to make sure I do/don't do each day - and am going to use it like a checklist. (Like don't drink soda, do drink water, work out, etc..)
Anyway, wish me luck - I'll post next Thursday on my progress.
Thanks for all the kind words, guys - I really appreciate the support!
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
After getting the 2 little ones ready to go pick up Elisa from school, and getting them in the van, I tried to start the van - and it wouldn't start. It was 5 til 3 and I knew I would be late. So I called everyone I could think of to see if someone could go get her - to no avail. I had to walk. It's about a 25 min walk - not really a big deal. I've done it before - many times actually. In fact, last year I did it in the hot, hot sun while 6 months pregnant!! Today I had difficulty. Maybe it was because I was pushing 2 kids in crazy wind and practically running so as not to be too terribly late - but I think it was just because I'm fat.
Gosh - it's crazy how it's so hard to even write that.
I've known it for a long time - but I've never felt it until today. It sucks to feel fat.
I should be able to walk 25 minutes with my kids without feeling sore or winded. I should be able to play basketball with my husband without being self-conscious about how I look. I'm tired of choosing my outfits not by what looks best, but by what makes me look the least fat. Ick.
I'm tired of feeling like the fat girl in the room. I'm tired of people being careful what they say around me. I'm sick of always feeling guilty anytime I eat anything that tastes good. Most of all, I want to believe my husband when he tells me how beautiful I am.
I don't write all this for sympathy - in fact, I'm kinda wishing no one would read this one. I just had to write it. I had to admit it. It's time to stop feeling crappy and do something about it.
Today I will set a goal and start working towards it. I'm kinda thinking that if I put it out there - I'll be more likely to stick to it. You will all keep me accountable just by me knowing your out there.
Tonight I will take measurements so I'll have a place to start. If I'm feeling crazy brave, I might even post them. We'll see. For now, it feels good to just vent a little.
Feeling fat today...and hating it!
So, one's at school, one's asleep, and the third is glued to the TV watching Clifford - so now just might be my chance.
There's so much to talk about - I'm not sure where to begin.
Ricky left town on Sept 12th and was gone for 3 weeks. He was able to come home twice, both for about a day and a half. He finally came home to stay this past Friday afternoon. Needless to say, it has been a very difficult 3 weeks. It's awful how we always tend to take people for granted, only to realize it when they're gone. I never realized how much I depend on Ricky until he wasn't there. For the first week, I barely even got to talk to him on the phone. It stunk. I was all on my own. The girls all responded in different ways to him being gone. Elisa (my 8 yr old) started talking back and acting out. She became argumentative (at least more than usual) and unusually weepy. Syd (my 2 yr old) stopped potty training. We were almost completely there right before Ricky left, and now we're having to start all over again. She seems to have lost all interest - weird. And Maya (our 6 month old) quit sleeping through the night the minute he left. She had been sleeping all night for a week or so, but the night he left she woke up several times. She didn't start sleeping through the night again until the night he came back - double weird. Maybe she could tell that I was uneasy and it made her uneasy. Who knows?
I found a song a few days ago that really spoke to where I have been for the last few weeks. Here are some of the lyrics:
Am I strong or weak?
Is it Your job to test me?
Am I strong or weak?
Are you gonna take everything, everything from me?
You needed me to be alone so I could finally see, how I need You, I need You...
All that I know is that it's better to love You
All that I see, I'm seeing the courage You give me
so let me stumble, let me tumble, tripping over my own feet.
Let me find you, let me feel you making me complete
Oh, i can move, I can run when Your with me
I can move, I can run - You make me brave
It's by a girl named April - she's local to Nashville, and unsigned I believe. I love her CD - really great stuff!
Anyway, I didn't think I'd survive the 3 weeks. It wasn't even all the extra work that got to me (though there was a LOT of extra work!). It was mostly the loneliness I felt. I never realized how much I depended on the companionship. After 10 years, I've gotten pretty used to having him around. It's the longest period we've ever been apart - pathetic, huh?
I learned a lot about me these last 3 weeks. I learned a lot about priorities - and the importance of focusing on my family. I learned a lot about how over-extended I am (and always have been). I learned a lot about the importance of a daddy in a girl's every day life. Most importantly, I learned a lot about the importance of depending on God, rather than my husband for strength, joy and peace. I meditated on a few verses throughout the 3 weeks that were pretty significant to me. Here is one I actually wrote on my marker board and read out loud several times each day:
4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.