Monday, March 30, 2009

Have you ever been to church or Sunday School when the preacher was doing a series on the book of John's Revelation? It can be a very confusing and muddling book. How much is literal? What parts are figurative? Is it teaching a pre-millennial, an a-millennial or a post-millennial view? How are we to interpret the beasts? Who is the Anti-Christ? How are we to understand the book as a whole and the parts of the book?

A few years ago I figgered it all out and I'm going to tell you what I figgered. There are some very smart intellectual kinds of people (like the Marvelous Mark and Dashing Dan) who can study the book and understand the cognitive, intellectual, theological points. Good for them! But there is something else there. The book is choir practice! Think about it. How many songs are recorded in this one book that we will be singing in heaven? John clearly saw the saints and the angels singing these specific particular praises to God. Many of them are familiar and have been set to music by Georg F. Handel and other more contemporary saints. So over the next few weeks and months, I'm going to be working on learning these songs to get ready. These will be my memory verses....if I can stick with it and follow through. So for this week, here it is if you want to join me. This first one is so easy I feel like I ought to do an extra one, but here it is and if I decide to add an extra one I will post it later in the week.

Revelation 4:8 (NASB)
And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, "HOLY, HOLY, HOLY IS THE LORD GOD, THE ALMIGHTY, WHO WAS AND WHO IS AND WHO IS TO COME"

Sunday, March 29, 2009

A while back I talked a little bit about stewardship and how it is not just the way we spend our money but affects every area of life. This morning I was thinking about mental energy and where I have been pouring my mental energy lately. I have two major wasters of that; the first is computer solitaire (and how silly is that?!). The second is fretting over mistakes (like spending too much time on computer solitaire). Our son is now almost 20 years old. He is an amazing young man. He understands who he is (a child of God) and to Whom he belongs (our Heavenly Father). Yet I get caught up in little things, like "What did I do wrong to create this or that personality glitch?" "Why didn't I do a better job as a mother teaching him about this or that?" The Mama blame-game can be endless and it is a WASTE OF TIME! If I am really that concerned over something I see or a mistake I think I have made it is a much better use of my time to go to my closet, get on my knees or my face and PRAY.
For years I have battled the "what if" demon and its attempt to control my mind, so once again I am in a season when I will have to recite these two verses (and please forgive me if one of them seems out of context; it is a little bit, but I think the principle applies).

Philippians 3:12-14 (NIV)emphasis mine
12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

II Corinthians 10:5b (NIV)
we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

We got home safely from North Carolina without any major weather hassles. What a relief!

Saturday was a big day, the day our Emily married Wyatt. There had been a bit of concern ever since we found out the wedding was going to be late March in Birmingham. Outdoors. Earlier in the week the forecast had been for strong storms and even possible tornadoes. After lots and lots of prayers from lots and lots of people, we had a dry wedding...apart from a few sentimental tears from a few sentimental aunts! Emily was absolutely beautiful. All the bridesmaids were perfect. The flower girl (Wyatt's niece) was more well-behaved than any flower girl I have ever seen. Wyatt was very handsome and the look on his face when he finally saw Emily in her gorgeous gown was unforgettable. Everything was absolutely perfect. Eventually I may get a few pictures posted.

Now we are working and waiting to get everything finished up for closing. Our dates are all a little tentative but we are looking forward to finally being in our own home out in the country. I'm really looking forward to being able to post pictures of the house and our progress as we move in and make it ours.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Last day in Durham! Mark is off taking a test to finish up this week of classes and I have got to finish packing up the room so we can hit the road. Things are looking good for being able to close on our new home on schedule, and we are very excited about that. Tomorrow is a wedding day in our extended family, and that is also very exciting for all of us!
Have you ever woken in the morning with a song or a verse running through your mind? Sometimes I have wished the song were NOT running through my mind. In the old days when Dan was a pre-schooler it was often a Barney song, or a Sheri Lewis and Lamb Chop song. This morning I woke up thinking about Psalm 84:11. Think about this today, and remember that while sometimes God defines "good things" a little differently than we do, His gifts are always good.

The Lord God is a sun and shield. The Lord gives grace and glory. No good thing shall He withhold from those who walk uprightly.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

How do they do it? How do these ladies and gentlemen who have blogs and children and a life still manage to post on a blog EVERY SINGLE DAY? I follow several good and fun blogs; Sassy Gal Glamour (a true southern belle and my beauty tip maven), Greenville Daily Photo (a stroll down memory lane of growing up in Greenville), Thrifty Mama and Organizing Junkie, just to mention a few. How do they do it?

Mark and I are on a roller coaster right now, cranking up that big, scary thrill-hill getting ready for the ride of a life time. So that is why I have not posted in a long while. Early this month we went and had an appointment with a real estate agent on a Tuesday. We had a few houses we had looked at on-line that we were interested in walking through, we knew what county we wanted and what part of that county we wanted. Melvin (shout out to the best realtor in the area!) told us about a house that he thought would be a very good one for us. We weren't too impressed by the description, but agreed that when Melvin and I went out to drive around and look at things the following week, it might be one to go see. He gave us the print-out of the house and we left to take Mark back to work. After I dropped Mark off I went out to look at a house that we had seen, but as I was driving back to town I realized that it was much too far for us (45 minutes from Mark's work and we did not know at that time what Dan's work situation was going to be). The house was great, but it just would not work for us. Since it was too early to pick Mark up, I decided to go look at the house Melvin had suggested. Then Mark and I went back to look at the house. On Thursday we went with Melvin to look at the house. On Friday we put an offer on the house. On Saturday it was accepted! Interestingly, Friday was Mark's birthday celebration, so our family joke is that I got Mark a house for his birthday this year. It ain't over til we have all signed on the dotted line at closing, but it looks like we will be closing soon and moving within the next few weeks. Once it really, truly happens, I will post lots of pictures of the house and the decorating process.

This week Mark and I are back in Durham where Mark is in classes until Friday morning. We'll drive back to the 'Ham Friday evening...pray us home because there are strong storms predicted while we are driving home. Saturday our niece Emily will get married. On Sunday Dan will become an official member of Cahaba Park Presbyterian Church. On Monday I start packing!

So stay tuned and I will try and do a better job of updating!

Monday, March 09, 2009

At long last, here are the snow pictures. This past weekend it was up into the 70's, daffodils, forsythia, bradford pears and cherry blossoms are out all over the place, and it was hard to believe there was snow on the ground one week ago!

These are early in the morning before church.

And these are on the way home from church later in the morning.

Can you see the snowball that Dan was throwing?

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Last weekend was a typical Birmingham late February/early March weather weekend. I feel as though I am now an official resident after going through it with James Spann (our local weather-man). On Friday we had lightning, strong thunderstorms, and in some areas tornadoes. On Saturday it was clear with flooding. On Sunday we woke up to snow. Even though it had rained so much and been so warm on Friday and Saturday, the snow stuck and we had a couple of inches. I don't have any pictures from Friday but Dan and I went house-hunting Saturday and found our way blocked by flooding.

We turned around and headed back an alternate route and that was flooded as well.

We did finally find the house and discovered that a large portion of the acreage was under water (I was thankful that we looked at it on that particular day.)
I also have quite a few snow pictures. It will take me a couple of days to get everything up, but here are the flood pictures to start with. I'm just thankful that this weekend is supposed to be fair and warm!