Wednesday, January 30, 2008
No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.
I talked about focus in my post titled Focus (what else?) and I talked about simplicity in my post titled Goodbye 2007. God just won't let me go with these two. Here are two paragraphs from my Bible study Believing God by Beth Moore:
Oh, If only we’d follow and not run ahead or lag behind! Just follow. Our perceptions have been so distorted by our world system that we fear God’s path may be right and respectable, but it’s sure to be boring. Does that sound like the life described in 1 Corinthians 2:9? The only way we will have an earthly experience with God that is more than ears have heard, eyes have seen, and minds have ever imagined is to walk with Him. God has promised never to leave us or forsake us. If we persist in our own way, the Spirit of God will accompany us (Ps 139:7-10), but we will walk ourselves right into a place we may as well call less-than land, the place of God’s permissive will. When we choose to walk with God rather than off the path to handfuls of other options, we find His perfect will for our lives. We find our promised land.
I have discovered that if Satan can’t get to me with destruction, he will try to get to me with distraction. We have only one turn on this green earth. We will never get to do this again. We cannot do a hundred things to the glory of God, but we can certainly do a few. What you and I need is focus. Day in and day out. Eyes on the goal. In our frenzied lifestyles we are desperate for simplicity: for a hundred things to narrow down to one.
God has narrowed things down for me. My children are my ministry priority. It scares me a little how much I've let this world convince me that this task is boring and little fun. No wonder so many moms choose work outside the home. I am at home and I find myself believing the same thing. Not any more. My children are precious and priceless and will be out of my home before I know it. I will NOT believe the world's lies anymore. God has prepared more than I can imagine for us and I am going to be diligent in obedience so I won't miss it. Just following. Not lagging behind or running ahead. Part of my obedience is to stop being on the computer (distractions) so much and spend more time with my kids just playing. I am going on a small computer fast and so I won't be posting anything else until sometime next week.
I have heard a saying:
The biggest impact a mother can have on the world is through her children.
Before I go: please continue to pray for Makenna. The doctor has ordered blood work. He thinks maybe it is time to change the dosage of medicines due to Kenna growing. Also, he thinks that these right side seziures could just be things rewiring. My Nana's surgery went good, but the area was too narrow and they weren't able to put the stint in. Not sure what happens now. Please pray for Me and the girls as we travel to San Antonio. I'm so excited! I think we're gonna stop in Waco on the way home and see Marianne, Makenna, Matt, Micah, and Marlee!!! Yay!
The more I'm giving to Jesus the more He is giving to me! As my Bible study says:
You can NEVER outspend God!!!
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Praise Him all creatures here below
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!
God answered our prayers with a YES!!! Avery's cancer is gone!!! Please check out their blog and PLEASE say a prayer of thanksgiving to our God Most High!!! And don't you dare believe Satan's lies if he is whispering in your ear right now saying that your prayer didn't do anything. That God would have done this even if you didn't pray. God is so pleased and blessed that we asked and that we exercised our faith!!!! Your prayer affected the Creator of the Universe. Just sit there a minute and let that blow your mind and melt your heart. (I am in no way saying that when God says no He is not affected by our prayers, it is just obviously different for us when He says yes - I hope and pray that that makes sense to you all)
Praise the Lord, I tell myself;
with my whole heart, I will praise His holy name.
Praise the Lord, I tell myself,
and never forget the good things He does for me.
He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases.
He ransoms me from death and surrounds me with love and tender mercies.
He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle's.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Second, Makenna had another big seziure in her right arm yesterday so please continue to pray for her too. Matthew 7:7 in the New Living Translation uses what I have been taught is the more correct verb tense. This is what it says: Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened.
This coming weekend Princess and I are going to San Antonio with my youngest sister. Kara (my sister) is in a cheerleading competition and my mom and/or my other sister can't go with her so I get to!! We are going to stay with my sister-in-law, whose husband is living in OKC (Oklahoma City) right now because he has started his new job and Molly (SIL) hasn't finished hers in SA yet. It is going to be so much fun!!!The boys are staying home with RC and the grandparents so I'm sure they will have fun too. I think they are planning on going to see The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything b/c we didn't get to for Bear's B-day. I'm very busy, though, b/c I'm trying to cram five days of school into four. So...I better get going.
Also, just remembered, my Nana is having a stint put in her kidney. She only has one kidney so we gotta keep this one working. :-) Please pray for her, too. It is scheduled for tomorrow morning.
Oh yes, and one last thing. (I think) Popeye is doing much better. Thanks so much for your prayers!
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Marianne updated this morning with some very frustrating news. A little recap for those new to the blog: Marianne is my best friend and her daughter Makenna has a seziure disorder. During 2007 Makenna had FOUR brain surgeries systematically removing the back three lobes on the right side of her brain. Makenna is 3ys old. Our prayer has been that all the abnormal brain tissue be only on the right side of her brain. All seziures were on the left side of her body. Particularly in her left arm and in her mouth. Well, this morning as Marianne was changing Makenna's baby sister's (Marlee) diaper Marianne saw something out of the corner of her eye. She turned to see Makenna having a full blown seziure in her RIGHT arm. Her right arm hung limp at her side after it was over. I know you all know this but I just have to make sure you understand. The left side of the brain controls the right side of the body. In 2007 we were dealing with the right side of the brain and the left side of the body. I'm sure you can understand how very, very, very frustrating this is.
Here is what I'm asking from all of you: Let's step in for Marianne and Matt, for Team BrAvery, and for all the others and let's maintain a spirit of expectation for them. Let me explain. In my Believing God Bible study there is a story of a man named Duane Miller. Duane was miraculously healed by God, in front of a large group of people NTL, but he first struggled with his condition for 3 years. In Duane's own words: "Both Joylene (his wife) and I knew God could heal. We also continued to hope that He would yet heal me. But after almost three years of unanswered prayer, I had become a pragmatist. I felt that it was time to learn to deal with life as it was instead of wasting any more time trying to make it what it could not be. It was just too exhausting to maintain a spirit of expectation."
The story goes on to tell us how God surrounded him with people that maintained that spirit for him. You can read Duane's story in his book Out of the Silence.
It is so hard to maintain a spirit of expectation when you have to live it 24/7 so let's step in and help our fellow brothers and sisters out and maintain the spirit of expectation for them. I believe with all my heart that God has said He is going to heal Makenna in this life on this earth. I also felt God lead me to give Avery Psalm 103:1-5. check it out... seriously.
In Exodus 17:8-16 we read about the Amalekites attacking the Israelites. While the Israelites fought, Moses stood on a hill and watched. As long as Moses' arms were raised the Israelites would be winning, but when he put his arms down the Amalekites would be winning. So, when Moses' arms got tired Aaron and Hur brought him a stone to sit on and they held up his arms for him. We need to hold up their arms for them. I can't do this alone, you can't do this alone, and they can't do this alone. This is why God gave us each other.
One last thing, I would love to read about what is going on in everyone's lives. Either respond to this blog, to the email, or START YOUR OWN BLOG!!! I like the last idea best!:-)
P.S. Popeye is still having a hard time fighting this crud. Please pray for him also.
Friday, January 25, 2008
Ok, Avery's blog: http://www.teambraverys.blogspot.com/
Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O Lord.
Renew them in our day, in our time make them known
Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God?
You are the God who performs miracles; You display your power among the peoples.
"Everything is possible for him who believes." - Jesus (Mark 9:23)
Thursday, January 24, 2008
Most nights RC puts the kids to bed. I read them stories then RC takes over. Kinda his special thing with the kids. Well, on Monday nights RC doesn't get home until after 9:00 so it's up to me to put them to bed. Bobo and Bear share a room and Princess and Popeye share a room. I get them in bed and then stand in the doorway and pray. This past Monday night I was in another world and started to leave Popeye's room without praying. As I was turning off the light Popeye says "Mom, you forgot the prayer." I know it's not a big thing but to know that my 4yr. old is aware of what I'm doing and WANTS me to do it is precious!
Popeye ran a high fever all day yesterday. So, last night I decided to lay down with him for a little while to make sure his breathing wasn't labored. After about ten minutes I hear him say "Mom" (very pitiful like) and I say "yes, buddy". He continues, "I'm not scared, God is with me." a.k.a "Please go sleep in your own bed." It's hard to convey how cute this was. I guess you need to know that when our children come to us at night and say they are scared we take them back into their room and pray with them and tell them over and over that God is always with them and they don't need to be scared.
Anywho...those were two of the many cute things he has done lately and I just wanted to share.
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Daddy & his kiddos
Daddy & his Princess ( very much a daddy's girl)
Daddy & his boys (the Babione boys)
First of all, It's Me again, Margaret does in fact say "Are you naked?". It's a Ray Stevens song (he might not have been the first to record it, IDK) that is really kinda creepy. Makes it even funnier when I say it to my Nana. ;-)
Second of all, Princess is getting better, but night before last Bear woke up coughing and was puny all day yesterday. Last night Popeye woke up crying and coughing and running a 102.4 fever. He is very puny today. Lovely, isn't it?
Well, last night at dinner I took some pretty cute pics of RC and the kids. My mom-in-law offered to take the pic and let me be in it, but seeing as how I didn't have a stick of makeup on I politely refused the offer.:-)
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
This list is so small compared to the need that is in this world. Prepare yourself before you read these. Some of these children are not with us on earth any longer. At first these sites used to take me to a really dark place if I let them, but God has helped me learn to be sensitive to the pain and heartache of others without allowing fear into my own life. I know he'll do the same for you.
If you just visit one site then please visit Makenna's. (the last one posted) This is the daughter of my best friend. In the words of Marianne:
"Do you wonder why I ask for prayer for strangers? Because they need it. And because so many strangers pray for Makenna. I WILL return the favor."
We might not, yet, have a favor to return, but we do have a favor to do.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. Ephesians 6:18
Monday, January 21, 2008
The last two weeks in a row I have gotten up at 5:00 am every weekday morning. Well, I'll not be making it three. At midnight Princess woke up barking so hard she was making herself sick. We did the whole steaming up the bathroom thing and she got better. I laid down with her for about 30 minutes then returned to my bed. 2:00am we had a repeat episode so I spent the rest of the night in bed with her. She ran a high fever on Saturday and stayed home with the grandparents on Sunday but seemed much better and hardly ran a fever all day Sunday. Plus, Saturday night she slept through the night fine. We did get a cool mist humidifier on Sat and put that in her room, hence my sleeping with her instead of the other way around. So...after a night of very little sleep I could not pull myself out of bed this morning. We got up at 8:00am.
Anywho...I don't have much to say (Praise the Lord, some may say:-)) I made a new friend today and don't have to cook dinner tonight! The miraculous can be found in the everyday!
Friday, January 18, 2008
"Lord, please steal my heart and consume my mind."
Well, folks, that is what has happened. The reason I usually post about what God is telling me or doing in my world is because it really is the thing I think about most. He has stolen my heart and is consuming my mind! Praise God! I am a very different person from this time last year and the thing God is using most to bring about this change is His Word. I have known a handfull of people who love God and live life like I want to. The one constant among these people is their love of God's Word. They love it AND live it. It is a BIG part of EVERY part of their lives. I decided that to follow in their footsteps that was where I needed to start.
I had been the casual christian for so long. Doing little over the minimum. I struggled with fear, joylessness, selfishness, disobedience, and so many things. I tried in my own might to accomplish things for Christ and was very rarely successful. Of course, I would ask the Holy Spirit for His help, the problem was I didn't heed His instruction after asking. I continued to do it my way. I am in no way saying I am perfect now and no longer struggle with the things I mentioned above. The difference now is that the struggle is becoming less of a struggle. I have joy in circumstances I once didn't, I don't have fear in circumstances I once couldn't fight it, I choose obedience and selflessness more and more now. I still have a long way to go (see previous post:-)), but this road is the one I want to be on! This road is the one where the real adventure is!
All this to say something God has brought to my mind the last few days and yesterday spoke it to me very clearly (through an online Bible study). I know I keep talking about Beth Moore, but God is using her tremendously in this season of my life. Beth just returned from a trip to Angola this past year. She went with James and Betty Robison to help them in their mission to feed starving children. While there, a person within the organization explained to her that they can't just give the people seed for them to plant because the people are usually so hungry that instead of planting it they just eat the seed and then it really does them little good. On the way home from Africa God showed Beth how this scenario can apply to us spiritually. The Word of God is the seed and I believe so many of us are so spiritually hungry that we eat the seed instead of planting it into our lives. We read book after book, do Bible study after Bible study, listen to sermon after sermon in our pursuit to feed our souls but what we miss is actually applying the truths we are hearing or reading to our everyday lives. We still refuse to forgive, or tithe, or stop feeding our minds with meaningless things, etc.. Our heads become filled with knowledge but our lives remain unchanged and our souls remain starving. I have to insert here that none of this is of any importance without a real live ongoing relationship with Jesus. He is the reason (and ability) for it all. But my relationship with Jesus has been strengthened and blessed beyond measure by my loving the Word. After all, Jesus is the Word made flesh. God has cautioned me to not just eat the seed, but to plant it into my life. To let it grow and produce a harvest. A changed me and a glorified God!!!!
The most practical way that this is accomplished is through obedience. Obedience in the things the Bible is very clear about and obedience in the things that God tells me are just for me. Example: HGTV (home and garden tv) is not in and of itself bad, but it's effect on me, particularly when I don't watch it in moderation, is discontentment. I become discontent with what God has given me and desire the new and latest things. It entices me to pursue material gain. God has told me that His desire is for me to drastically limit my viewing of HGTV. Here's where I choose obedience even when it is 7:55 pm on Thursday night and a new episode of Candice Olsen Divine Design is about to come on.
I literally could write a novel on examples because I am so bent toward sin, but what I get in return for obedience is the peace of Christ that passes understanding, true joy even when life is hard, and a clear conscience that allows me to greatly enjoy being in the presence of Jesus. I know I've only touched the tip of the ice berg in this area because I have a lifetime ahead of me to choose obedience, experience Jesus, and witness His power and glory. I don't want to miss a minute of it! And I don't want you to miss it either. Please take that next step in your relationship with Christ. Whatever you feel He is asking you to do or not do, obey! I promise, but more importantly Christ promises, you won't regret it!
I love you all!
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
I decided to get online and visit a blog that I have recently found and in getting there I ran across an audio message by Beth Moore. It was called Preparing for a fresh work of God. A fresh work of God is something I am desperate for right now. So I listened. And God answered my prayer.
Repentance. I'm sure most of you have heard or studied about repentance. I have too. And while most of what was said I already knew I needed to be reminded. Repentance is not regret. Repentance is heart and will. I desire(heart) for things to be different and I am determined(will) to do what it takes to make things different. (the Holy Spirit alone gives us His power to make changes. We must determine and then He supplies the power to act.) I was also reminded that while there are many priviledges to being a part of the Kingdom of God there are also obligations. Making our best effort to live a godly life is an obligation. As I was typing this I felt led to look up the definition of obligation. Yes, it means what you think it means but this meaning stuck out to me: debt of gratitude, loyalty, affection. Our obligations to the Kingdom of God are not merely duty, they are a response of gratitude, loyalty, affection. I have to throw this in there and then I will move on: To whom do your actions, words, even thoughts, say that you are loyal? I want mine to say I'm loyal to Christ alone.
That was not where I was planning on going with this, but that is where God took me. Through the message I heard, the Word I read and some conversations I had yesterday I realized my problem was my focus. I had taken my focus off Jesus. I had focused on my circumstances, my emotions, my wants. I repented and last night and today are much better. I am putting everything I have into pleasing Christ, living a godly life. And it is very possible that I will loose my forcus again, but I am diligent in trying to keep that from happening.(reading/studying the Word, prayer, actively participating in the body of Christ, making the lifestyle changes God tells me to make)
Please join with me, friends, and let us show the world to whom we are loyal! Jesus Christ the King!!!
"Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near." Matthew 3:2
Saturday, January 12, 2008
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BEAR!!!
Yes, today Bear turned 7. He was so excited! We had some friends over who also have a first grader for lunch and cake. Bear chose a Pokemon birthday so he got lots of Pokemon stuff. We had Belgium waffles for dinner then went to Walmart to spend gift cards. More Pokemon stuff!!!
Grandpa and TamTam (my parents) got the kids a basketball goal! They were planning on getting them a new one, but this morning while RC was at work he heard on Swap Shop that a lady was selling a 3 month old one for $65. We made some phone calls (to Grandpa and the lady) and ended up getting it. At Walmart tonight we saw the exact same one for $198. We are pretty excited about the deal we got! We picked up some new b-balls tonight, too, so they are ready to play!
Thursday, January 10, 2008
Today is my husbands birthday!!!! He is 32 and getting hotter by the year! I'm not kidding! After lessons this morning the kids and I went to Dollar Tree and bought him some presents.:-)
Then we went and picked him up from work and took him to eat. He chose Benny's Pizza which also serves mexican food so it is a win-win for all of us. And the food is really good! We have Life Group tonight, a break tomorrow, and then Bear's Birthday on Saturday! We are going to try to go see the new Veggie Tales movie "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything" tomorrow night to celebrate and then Bear is having some friends over Sat. afternoon. Fun stuff!
Also, My best friend turns 30 today!!! Happy Birthday, Marianne!! I love you! Isn't it neat how my husband's and my best friend's birthdays are on the same day?! I think so!
Something God is speaking to me right now: Romans 4 talks about how God credits FAITH to us as righteousness, not works. Isaiah 64:6 tells us that our good works are like filthy rags. Nothing we do can ever be good enough to make us righteous. We must believe God who put our unrighteousness on His Son and put His Son's righteousness on us. It is very hard for me to wrap my mind around and my eyes sting with tears when I think about it. God choosing to give me His righteousness. But I'm so unrighteous! Here's where I must choose to believe. I'm learning how important faith is and how little of it I actually have. Praying God grows our faith tremendously in 2008!
It was for us, too, assuring us that God will also declare us to be righteous if we believe in God, who brought Jesus our Lord back from the dead. Romans 4:23-24
Wednesday, January 9, 2008
Monday, January 7, 2008
This first pic is of the kiddos doing one of their chores. They got spiderman socks in their stockings and Popeye's didn't fit so Princess wanted them. Pretty cute. Please ignore the dirty kitchen, but do notice the lovely tile on the floor. Yes, I cut those tiles, helped lay them and grouted them! Go me! (and my father-in-law and mother-in-law):-)
Sunday, January 6, 2008
I have no idea what was so funny.
The reason this entry it titled 5:00 A.M. is b/c that is the time I will be getting up each morning from now on. My husband leaves for work at 5:45 A.M. each day and so we are moving our whole schedule up a bit. As a family we will all be getting up earlier (the kids at 7) and going to bed earlier as well (the kids at 8). This is not a huge change from the way it already is but really any change takes effort. And I know that tomorrow when my alarm goes off it's gonna take some serious effort.
I just started a new Bible study about believing God. Not believing in God, but actually believing God. Taking Him at His Word. I'm really excited about it! If you want to do it along with me just go to www.lifeway.com/believinggod/ and sign up. It costs right under $27.00 and includes everything you need. You watch or listen to a session taught by Beth Moore on the first day and then you have five days of study. and so on and so on. I highly recommend it and if you do it make sure to let my know so we can talk about it!
I'll leave you with my memory verse
This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. John 15:8