Friday, February 27, 2009


Also, check out our church website to read an excellent article on suffering by our elder and friend, Keith Goad. Go here!

Reach Out.

We love our church. It's been a huge blessing to our first nearing-3 years of marriage to be at such a Gospel-centered and Gospel-in-action church. They help me understand why people call it your church family, and when we leave Louisville, it will be extremely hard to say good-bye, but we're SO thankful for the time we have had covenanting and worshipping at Third. And all we have learned!

Recently, our wonderful pastor gave us some suggestions for member care since we're growing, and it's always easy for people to fall through the cracks at any church. There were also several suggestions about outreach, but I wanted to bring up a few of these "inward"-focused ones, because they are important, too. We have a responsibility to love and care for each other as members. We have a responsibility to pray for each other and hold each other accountable. I have copied some of the suggestions below with the hopes you could apply them at your own church and as a reminder to myself:


After service, instead of first talking to those you know, make it a point to meet and greet one visitor and one other member you don’t know….
When a major event happens in the life of a member, good or bad…like the birth of a child or the loss of a family member…even if you don’t know them very well…make it a point to send them an email or a card, letting them know you’re praying for them….
Strategically consider ways you can serve another member who is at a different stage of life….
- Single and in college – how can you serve a couple with 2 children…and one on the way?
- Married with or without children – how can you pour into a college student?
- Long-time married couple, how can you invest in a younger or newly married couple?, ETC…

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Jesus Paid It All

I hear the Savior say,
“Thy strength indeed is small;
Child of weakness, watch and pray,
Find in Me thine all in all.”

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

For nothing good have I
Whereby Thy grace to claim;
I’ll wash my garments white
In the blood of Calv’ry’s Lamb.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

And now complete in Him,
My robe, His righteousness,
Close sheltered ’neath His side,
I am divinely blest.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

Lord, now indeed I find
Thy pow’r, and Thine alone,
Can change the leper’s spots
And melt the heart of stone.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

When from my dying bed
My ransomed soul shall rise,
“Jesus died my soul to save,”
Shall rend the vaulted skies.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

And when before the throne
I stand in Him complete,
I’ll lay my trophies down,
All down at Jesus’ feet.

Jesus paid it all,
All to Him I owe;
Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Has Anyone Read This?

Have any of you gals read this book? I always avoided it at the stores when it came out. I think I had prideful issues with reading Christian books that weren't by an author I knew was GOOD. If it wasn't on that list, then I assumed it was cheesy or something.

I am only on chapter 3, but I'm just wondering if you gals had read this. It's been helpful so far! I wish I would have read it before I got married. Or in high school even. I got it for about $4 at 1/2 Price Books recently.

I will just say this for now - while you can't stereotype your man and he may not fit into all of the research of this book, I'm pretty sure you can learn something about males in general. And it may help you be a more understanding and loving wife, friend, daughter, mom, church member, etc. And it may guide your prayers as you pray for men.

But... what I really want to know is did you read it? And, if so, what did you think? What did you learn?

If you haven't read it, more info can be found here. You can even read a PDF excerpt.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Yummy Food

I highly recommend my friend Kari's blog "series" on Meal Planning. I'm loving it!

Speaking of food...

I'm thinking I'm going to make pita chips and hummus this weekend! Here's hoping it's as good as the expensive Staci's Pita Chips and Deli-Counter Hummus I buy when I'm craving hummus/pita chips. :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Great News!

Nope - we aren't pregnant. :)

But... I just finished my last Valentine's Day Party in 5th grade. Lord willing, this is my last year to teach. But even if something changes and I do teach again, I think I will be sick on this day. And I think we may homeschool, but IF something changes and we send the kids to school, I will NOT be a ROOM MOM in 5th grade, and I will only send in conversation hearts or napkins. You won't be seeing me in a 5th Grade Valentine's Day Party ever again.

Whew. This is a good day. I'm going to go get a Dr. Pepper now.

P.S. I am getting my 15th boy in a few weeks. What's one more, I guess.

And to the unmarried...

My recent post was to wives, but I don't want to leave out my amazing friends who are not yet married. Marriage is NOT the point of our lives - Jesus is. (Both the married and unmarried seasons should point to Him!)

So if you are unmarried... go to Girl Talk for some encouragement today in this area. And use your "Valentine's Day" (or March 8, who cares what day?) to creatively plan to serve and bless others around you, too. Again, try to remove the focus from yourself and the creeping "why me?" thoughts. Who can you bless today?

And you can do it on a low budget too... babysitting is a great example!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Don't Let Money Hold You Back!

For the wives -
I think Valentine's is a great time to show your husband how much you love him. And, if you think that Valentine's is way overrated, commercialized and dumb, you are probably right. So, pick another day (Feb. 19 will work just fine, for example) and get to planning.

And, don't let money hold you back. I racked my brain this year trying to think of something fun to do that's virtually free, and I came up with something. It's been a really fun project. (Dustin's not a huge blogger, but just in case he checks, I'd better be stealthy, which adds to the fun element...)

What's my point? Well, here's the deal. I think that sometimes we women can get too me-centered. We want our husbands to surprise and romance us. (And sometimes they do, and sometimes maybe they don't.) We get expectations in our head and wonder what he will say or do to wow us (not just on Valentine's). But, we need to get others-focused, even in our homes. And it can be super fun! So, this year... don't think of yourself, just start scheming - how can you show your husband that you are crazy about him? How can you make him thrilled that he married you? How can you encourage him spiritually? How can you surprise him in the midst of a busy work week?

And don't worry about you. Don't CARE if he forgets. Don't fret if he's not romantic or full of surprises. You just do your part and love him well. Husbands are a blessing. Can you imagine your life without him?

If you have more ideas (especially low-budget ones), do share in my comment section. :)

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

A Peek Into My Day With 14 Boys

Funny conversation to recap:

Me (spoken kindly, I hope): “You know, (Boy 1). I’ve figured you out. Some people are morning birds and some are night owls, but you are like an afternoon Tigger, you are so bouncy after lunch! What's the deal?”

Boy 1 (bouncing): Yea! I'm Tigger! I love him!

Boy 2: Well, I’m a morning Pooh.

Boy 2 turns red and everyone laughs. Reality hits him that he REALLY just said he was a morning poo….

Hysterical laughs in Room 406.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Be Still!

Yesterday, we sang Be Still My Soul and then today I saw it on a friend's blog. Below, I have copied the words she posted from the hymn. It is a comfort as we approach Dustin's graduation and think ahead to many changes that await us and some that we await. He faithful will remain!

Be still my soul; the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief and pain.
Trust in thy God to order and provide;
Through every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still my soul, thy Best & Heavenly Friend
Through trying times leads to a joyful end.

Be still my soul; thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake
What once was mystery shall be bright at last.
Be still my soul; the wind and waves still know
His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below

Be still my soul, when dearest friends depart
And all is darkened by the rain of tears,
Then you will know the love of our Lord’s heart
He’ll come to soothe thy sorrow and thy fears.
Be still my soul: thy Jesus can repay
From His own fullness all He takes away.

Be still, my soul: the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord.
When disappointment, grief, and fears are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still my soul: when change and tears are past
One day, we’ll meet our Jesus, safe at last.