Sunday, March 31, 2013

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

God in entertainment~

Finally, brothers and sisters, 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
Philippians 4:8

Let me start right off by saying, I know this is a touchy subject.  That said, I am not throwing down the gauntlet for a theological debate.  I'm just thinking out loud.
There is an incredible amount of "stuff" now quickly and easily accessible.  Those of you raised in church and specifically in the charismatic movement of the 1970s will probably recall prophecies of things we now know referred to cable television and cellphones and the internet.  I believe this quick accessibility creates a dangerously low thresh hold for what we allow into our spirits.  We don't have the time we used to have to pause and consider whether we should expose ourselves to a particular book or movie, it's all at our fingertips.  As Christ Followers, we have to be more vigilant than we used to be.  In the space of seconds we can download a book to our Kindles that we would've never gone into a store and purchased.  With the avalanche of entertainment and technology, our tolerance has increased and, I believe, we are not as shocked as we used to be at what we see and hear.  As our acceptance of these things has changed, we have allowed our children to be exposed to sights, sounds and stories that would've been unacceptable one generation prior.
I know this because it happens in my own home.  No finger pointing intended, unless it is at myself.  If there is an ongoing argument in our house between the Mr. and I, it is what he considers acceptable and what I do.  He's a good guy, a guy who loves and serves the Lord and still; I often disagree with his "liberal" approach to entertainment.  And no, it's not pornography I'm talking about.
This is not shared with judgement and I do hope I can trust you to not leap to labeling Dean a reprobate.  Because even as I disclose this little tidbit, there are books and movies and television shows that I don't have a problem with that some of you would find shocking.
And guess what?  There are books and movies and television shows that you guys have recommended that I find unacceptable.
I read and enjoyed every single Harry Potter book and movie.  In fact, if I'm channel surfing and run across one...I stop and watch it.  Lots and lots of Christians are vehemently opposed to this series.  But not I.
Then again, I have seen The Hunger Games on multiple blogs and FBs as a great option for Christians, no immoral behavior, no sex.  I watched the first 20 minutes of the first movie and not only couldn't continue, I insisted it be removed and sent back to Netflix immediately.  There was no nudity but the violence of children against children literally turned my stomach.
The Twilight Series?  Never read it.  First of all, it's "tween" fiction, books written for adolescent girls.  Not something that holds my attention.  Secondly, for reasons I cannot explain (given my Harry Potter attitude,)  the premise of the books disturbs my spirit.  If I had a young lady in my home who wanted to read the books, I'd first of all read them myself to try to understand my gut reaction.  But unless the Holy Spirit gave me peace, they'd be forbidden. 
So I can't tolerate the violence of the Hunger Games and don't know why I  am bothered by Twilight.  But...I am fascinated by true life violence.  I read endless books about serial killers and murder.  I watch those television shows about the life of Ted Bundy and The Unibomber.  I followed the Jon Benet Ramsey murder and still do when there are new developments.  More often than not, people cannot understand how I can stomach such evil and grief.  This I do understand, it's because the perpetrators of these crimes are the future of many of my patients.  I need to remain engaged in understanding this horrible behavior if I'm to answer the Lord's call on my life which is to reach these disturbed people before they hurt someone.  I cannot be so mortified that I turn away.
What I do turn away from is scary movies.  I can read a book filled with crime scene photographs but Friday the 13th will torment me for days. In fact, I turn away from television commercials about horror films.
If you see inconsistency in this, that's my point exactly.  We no longer live in a world where the only evening entertainment option was Pa reading from the Bible or telling stories of his youth.  Everything is at our fingertips and we must guard our hearts against becoming calloused and therefore tolerant; or prideful and therefore self righteous.
As I attempt to navigate the onslaught of entertainment options, I have learned a few things that help me make choices with wisdom.  And most importantly, when the Holy Spirit says, "No," that's it.  I don't need to understand why. 

1.  When God instructs your heart to turn away from something, consider the matter settled.  Obedience sows the seeds of divinity into our lives.  If the Lord says, "No," seek to cultivate a heart that rejoices in pleasing him.  It doesn't matter if we think a matter is harmless, God's "No" is always correct and for our best.
2.  If you are going to take a stand against something specific, you may have to read the book or watch the movie or TV show in order to speak to the dangers inherent in it.  Anyone who has not read Harry Potter won't get more than a few seconds of my attention.  If you've read it and have an opinion that can be discussed without insulting my relationship with God; I'm interested.
3.  If you have kids or grands, know what they are watching and reading.  Read the Twilight books and then you can approve or disapprove with specific insight.  If the child in your life reads or watches that book or movie that concerns you, you will have a wonderful opportunity to talk about it.  And learn to be comfortable telling your kids that you don't have a specific reason but your heart is troubled.  What a wonderful gift, to teach a child to seek discernment! 
4.  If someone is offended by something that is not offensive to you, don't try to argue with them.  They are following the Holy Spirits leading for their own lives, never attempt to talk someone out of their personal convictions!  You won't find me telling people to research BTK or the Zodiac Killer.  We are each created with sensitivities specific to our own hearts. 
5. Even as we guard against the subtle and destructive influence of satan, we must guard against self-righteousness.  Consider Jesus who accused the religious of his day of being white washed tombs.  I work with someone who is very vocal about the evils of the Twilight movies and is one of the laziest people I know.  I'd rather she watched Twilight and displayed a work ethic worthy of someone who claims the name of Christian!

Living a life that pleases Jesus is a matter of a submitted heart more than of submitted actions.  The heart following after his pleasure will express itself in Godly behavior.  However, behavior that appears Godly can be driven by pride or even ignorance.  We must be careful, in these days of evil.  We must guard our hearts and our homes from the quiet influence of the enemy. 

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,
Philippians 2:12

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Lingy Room

This is a photograph of our living room a few years ago.  As you can see, it was pretty traditional.  In fact, I called it my C.S.Lewis Room.  It just felt like a mellow warm room where a person would go and, well, read C.S. Lewis books! 
The Mr. chose the paint color shortly after we moved in, it's sort of a muted yellowy gold.  He's a color guy, so the white and cream colors of my Gramma's style were just not his thing.  In fact, sometimes when I walk through our house now with the greens and yellows everywhere I wonder if she's up in Heaven shaking her head in dismay!
The C.S. Lewis Room, despite its charm, was not really my style.  Not entirely.  The wall color was ours but the furnishings were really a hodge podge of items pulled together from here and there.  We gave the blue camel back sofa away and tried a desk on that wall for a while.  Too stark. 
Then there was the daybed experiment where I placed a daybed where the sofa had been.  Functional as a "guest bed" and great for lounging and reading but impossible to decorate around.  It just dwarfed the rest of the furniture and never looked quite right.  So that took about a week to start making me nuts.
Finally, I think (she said with fingers crossed,) we have it figured out.

The little chair is gray with bright colorful birds, a Christmas gift from the Mr.  The sofa was a delivered on Friday and my super cute nesting tables arrived today. The area rug from Garden Ridge.  You know you have gotten a room just about right when you just want to sit in there and stare.  It's a very small room so it always seemed over furnished and stuffy.  This time I decided to keep the furniture at a modest scale and not to keep adding items.  The nesting tables are perfect because they provide the balance of a coffee table but can be separated when we have company to use as a spot for a cup of coffee. 
Notice the picture of daboyz behind the couch?  A photograph my dad took in the Smokies in 1993 and my mom had blown up and printed on canvas.  This picture causes the Mr. to do quite a bit of staring and sighing himself.  And speaking of the Mr. and his choice of wall color?  He now hates it.  Hates it!  I'm all for repainting but I know the guy well enough to realize I needed to work with what I have since the average length of time to go from deciding to paint and painting is about 5 years ;)  With the new furniture, I don't mind it a bit.  In fact, it's worthy of the sitting and staring I mentioned. 
Yup, this chick is very happy with her low budget living room update!  I'm gonna take a shower and pull out that fancy new Kindle of mine and enjoy the no-longer-the-C.S. Lewis Room. 
Now what are we gonna call it?  For now I think I'll go with what daboyz used to say, The Lingy Room.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Saturday, March 23, 2013


1.  The sun is shining, sort of.
2.  Got my new Kindle and turns out, it's pretty cool.
3.  Got my new sofa and I LOVE IT! 
4.  The Mr. and I are going to visit the Henry Ford Museum today.
5.  Mac had his first clinical experience taking care of patients and did great (naturally!)
6.  Got cramps.  Sorry, had to share the joy.
7.  Have a facial next Saturday, my new favorite indulgence.  Having middle-aged skin makes it less luxurious and more "don't scare the little children."
8.  Spent most of Friday at work "starring" in a training video for police/security dealing with people or patients who are armed.  Fun! 
9.  I neeeeed to plant flowers and herbs and my salad garden. 
10.  Here are the new shoes I bought for work and yes, I wore them in the very serious training video...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I'm dreaming of a greeeen Springtime!!!

This mid March snow has the Mr. and me dreaming of vacation and planning ahead just to keep our sanity.  For a girl who loves snow, even I am ready for some sunshine and warm temperatures. 

Every year we go Up North to my mom and dad's cottage for a week and this year, we are going to be bringing along Mac's girl Susan.  

Susan & cute are they?

It will be her first time at the cottage & we know she's going to love it like we do.  This is a kid after my own heart, doesn't need constant entertaining (good thing in this family) and is always happy to join me in the kitchen.  I'm going to introduce her to the fine art of lumberjack breakfast making and Northern Michigan beach picnics!

The Mr. cooking, 2011
This year we are starting off in Traverse City where we will stay at Sugar Beach Resort on the Bay.  The Mr. has already made reservations since it'll be Cherry Festival Time as well.  I'm ready to go right now!  This will be my first vacation since my surgery and it may not seem all that exciting but I can actually wear a bathing suit and dress comfortably now.  In fact, I've already tried my suit on and, true story, just about cried!  I'm no Victoria Secret model, still a chunky middle aged chick with cottage cheese thighs and a belly roll but I don't care.  I'm happy.  I will be sitting on the beach with my toes in the water and loving every minute.
Traverse City, Sugar Beach Resort

So, my dear Mitten, snow and blow your way through March and we will wait (im)patiently for the sunny days we know are coming.  In the meantime, day dreams of flowers and herb gardens and vacation planning will keep us occupied.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Still working on the living room~

Oh Law, this living room of mine just will not come together!!  As you may recall, I purchased a daybed from my cousin to use as the solution to our lack of a guest bed (for the one time per year we need one.)  Love the look of it, love the convenience of it, love the comfort of it. But!  It is a pretty massive piece of furniture and it's nearly impossible to furnish the rest of the small room with pieces that are properly proportioned.  The Mr. got me this chair for Christmas...
I love this chair, I adore it.  I smile at it whenever I walk past.  However, despite it's funky fabulous personality, it is dwarfed by the daybed.  It (the chair) has squat legs and a wide seat and back, which is perfect for the people who live with it because, so do we.  But it looks like doll furniture in the room.  I considered buying some Home Depot pre-made furniture legs to make it taller but that is a lot of work and would compromise the personality of the bird chair.  So, I've faced the fact that if I am keeping the daybed in the living room as the sofa, I am going to have to live with the less than ideal aesthetic.  Which I thought I could.  But I can't.  I can't.  I just can't. 

However, we only use the living room on occasion.  When we're having family dinners and need more space or when I'm in the mood to sneak to a quiet corner away from the Mr. and daboyz.  So I don't need, nor can I afford, an expensive sofa.  I've been on a search for a budget friendly sofa and thinking that I'd like a gray colored fabric.  I ordered the sofa below from Value City for the reasonable price of $299.99.
Sorry this is so blurry, pulled off line.
Being a small space to begin with and then with the addition of the Mr.'s mom's piano, I have been on the hunting for tables with white legs and wood stain top.  So imagine my excitement when I found these beauties on Amazon!  Nesting tables!  Can use them as coffee table, move them around when we need them and tuck them away when we don't! Less than $90!

I think, I hope, I pray that I will have finally solved my low-budget living room update dreams!  No plans for repainting at the moment but I'm not concerned, I think the pale gray will look nice with the mellow gold walls.  I am going to pull the blue and red accents out and (eventually) replace them with creams and whites.  When all the pieces are in place, I will take a picture and close the saga of the living room/C.S.Lewis room.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Good Riddance Foul Week! Also, my hair is fabulous.

1. I said to the Mr., "I need to have a weekend this weekend and I'm going to have one."  He asked what that meant.  I don't know but doggone, it will happen.  Or not.
2. I saw an elderly mixed race couple at dinner, just touched me heart.  They weren't raised in a generation when it was ok to love someone of a different ethnicity.  Good for them.
3. I learned a new trick, use baking soda weekly to exfoliate.  Lovely results!
4. I love Wen so much I ordered some from QVC.  I have never loved my hair before. Am I dreaming? 
5. My job is eating me alive.  I know God is in here somewhere doing something but at the moment, I'm entirely baffled as to what that might be. 
6. Mac had his first clinical day, loved it.  I loved hearing the love of it in his voice.
7. I get to wear underwire bras now.  How many bras do normal people have?  I have no bra baseline.
8. Quote of the week that nearly made me crawl over a table and poke someone's eyes out, "I don't know what you expect from me.  I simply forgot to remember."
9. The Mr. surprised us by booking a night in a Traverse City resort during our Up North vacation this year.  Donny is hoping my folks allow him for a visit or he'll be spending that particular night in the trunk.
10. Donny, by the way, stepped on my Kindle which was in my bed and smooshed the screen.  It was actually Jay's old one that he handed down to me but still, all of my books lived in there.  I ordered a new one today.  It's all fancy and high falootin'.  I miss my humble old Kindle. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Casting myself on him~

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7

I was raised to believe that you finish your work before you play.  I still believe in this particular philosophy.  That's why, when the weekend comes, I do my house work before I venture out to the movies or the mall. 

However, it doesn't work when it comes to managing stress or worry.  My instinct tells me that I can let go of anxiety when I've solved the problem.  Pretty silly since, usually, anxiety is the result of a problem not easily solved.  For instance, when I leave work, I cannot leave my worries at the door because my brain keeps reminding me that I haven't earned my rest until I've completed my responsibilities.  It doesn't help that I work in a position which requires around the clock availability seven days a week.  Nor that the measure of success in this job is the bent toward being a workaholic. 

I'm in a season in my life where many lessons are well-learned and thank the Lord for it!  No desire to turn back the clock for this girl.  I know how to manage my money, keep my home and nurture healthy relationships.  Now there are new lessons to be learned and I'm starting to suspect that the tutorial won't be over until heaven.  The current subject matter, stress management.  And the current problem, resting in the Lord and not on my laurels. 

It takes no faith to work and wrestle with problems and then, when they are "fixed," to take a break.  However, it takes tremendous trust in God to put boundaries on our efforts and then to stop for a time of refreshing while He takes the wheel.  It's not true that when we step away the worries of our minds are being ignored.  I am getting the idea that instead, the Lord needs me to get out of His way sometimes so that the behind the scenes miracles can unfold!  While I am resting in Him and forgetting the concerns of the day, He has total control.  He doesn't have to rein in my sloppy attempts to fix things and can completely work in spiritual places unhindered by my imperfect flesh.  And as He moves heaven and earth to tend to my chore list, the Holy Spirit is moving too, tending to my soul. 

Don't throw away the blessing of quiet and rest.  Nor that of fun and leisure.  God works within these as powerfully as in toil and sweat.  Cast your cares on Him. 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Forsake not the sear!

What more traditional Sunday dinner is there than a pot roast?  For many of us, it's the perfect meal to pop into the oven (or crockpot) before we leave for church in the morning.  Hours later, we return to a home filled with the delicious scent of pot roast and if one is really on top of things, peppers and carrots simmering away in the same pot. 
Pot roasting making is pretty standard American fare and relatively easy for anyone.  The Mr. is a huge fan and will happily make it himself if the mood strikes.  He has two approaches; crock pot or oven bag with French onion soup mix for seasoning.  He prefers instant potatoes to those roasted with the meat.  He throws a can or two of premade gravy to the juices and is a happy man.  I'm not going to be a pot roast snob, I sit right down with my plate of instant potatoes and canned gravy/juice and dig right in.  However, I have a different approach when it's my turn to present a pot roast for dinner.
Rule number one...forsake not the sear!
I am a cast iron cook.  Anything that can be made in my cast iron dutch oven or in my ancient cast iron skillet is my preference.  Pot roast is no exception.
I start by heating olive oil in my cast iron pot on the stove top.  While the oil is warming up over medium high heat, I rinse my roast and pat it dry with paper towels.  Then I rub in cracked pepper, coarse salt and garlic on the top, bottom and sides of the roast.  When the oil is just about smokin', I put the roast in and sear it on all sides.   The smell is amazing and you know you're done searing when it looks like you want it to look.
After searing, heat oven to 350 and get your dutch oven ready to throw in for the roasting portion.
I add quartered potato, carrot, green pepper and onion to the pot.  I am not above using the onion soup mix, although I prefer the canned version to the dry.  I like to start with a base of tomato paste or sauce (about 4 ounces give or take depending on the size of your roast.)  To the tomato paste I add soup mix if I'm so inclined but usually a few cups of beef broth (chicken broth will work too.)  I whisk the mixture and pour it over the meat and veggies and into the oven for a few hours (again depending on the size of roast and your preference for done-ness.)
The tomato will flavor and tenderize your pot roast like nothing else and creates a base for the most rich and amazing gravy ever ever in the history of gravies.  If you have red wine, that's a great addition at about a 1:1 ratio with broth. 
After the roast is done, transfer meat and veggies to a platter to rest and start on your gravy.  Simply put that fabulous cast iron dutch oven back on stove top and carry on with your standard gravy method.  In my case, I remove a cup or so of the liquid to a large measuring cup and whisk in a few tablespoons of flour until it's thickened and then slowly add back into the large pot again, whisking in slowly.  With the already seasoned liquid, I usually don't need to add anything to my gravy.  I make as much gravy as possible hoping for leftovers because...
Yes!  You guessed it, I make soup!
If there are left overs, I use the gravy as my base and any meat or veggies left and make soup by adding in broth and tomato juice or V-8 and whatever else is around.  Rice, potato, pasta for starch if desired.  Corn, green beans or whatever else you like.  I will often put the left over soup base into a large Ziploc bag and freeze it for easy soup when I'm in the mood.
I know that I've added a few steps to the process that sort of make this a more complicated approach than the easy throw-together method that most of us appreciate for busy Sundays.  But you can do the prep, including the sear, the day before and then toss it into the oven in the morning as always.  Crock pot?  Not my favorite choice, I prefer the oven roasted method.
Get yourself a cast iron dutch oven and get to searing!

Monday, March 04, 2013

Who told you?

Genesis 3:11
And he said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?"

Our pastor used to have a saying, "You have to put the cookies down on the bottom shelves where the children can reach them."  In other words, you have to teach people at a level which they can understand.  I'm a very churched girl.  Been in Sunday School for my entire life.  Raised in a Christian home with a Christian family who used scripture to frame life, who would discuss the Old Testament the way other people yacked about baseball scores.  Yet, sometimes God still has to put the cookies on the bottom shelf for me. 

A few days ago, I was brushing my hair when the Holy Spirit pointed out some spiritual Oreos ;)  I was thinking about my crummy hair.  Too thin, too fine, too much this, not enough that.  Then a still, small voice spoke within my heart...

"Who told you you had crummy hair?"

Weird but somehow, poignant at that moment.  I stopped to think, when did I realize I hated my hair?  I thought back to being an elementary school kid with long hair parted down the middle.  Pushed behind my ears to keep it out of my face.  I don't recall hating it then.  So, who did tell me I had crummy hair?  Seems silly I know, but it started me thinking about all of the ideas I have about myself and just who exactly told me they were true.  I'll spare you the list of physical stuff I dislike and jump to the point. 

Who told me I didn't have the will power to control my appetite?  Who told me that food could comfort me better than the presence of the Holy Spirit?  Who told me I couldn't be physically active? 

Who told me ________________?

Every message that leaves me powerless, frustrated or joyless comes from one source and that is satan.  The same voice that spoke into the ear of Eve in the Garden of Eden. 

On Sunday night, Dean's 35 year old cousin Jaimie went into her bathroom and didn't come out.  Her ten year old daughter got help and Jaimie was found overdosed and without a heartbeat.  She was declared brain dead at the hospital.  Who told her she was a heroin addict?  Who told her she couldn't be free?  Who told her that the life of a wife, mom and grandmother wasn't available to her?  And who told us, her family, that this final indignity was inevitable for Jaimie? 

Oh, be careful little ears what you hear, oh be careful little ears what you hear.  For the Father up above is looking down in love, oh be careful little ears...little spirit, little heart, little mind...what you hear.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

I don't wanna go to church~

I've been a weekly (sometimes 3-4 x weekly) church attender for greater than forty years.  Until the last few, then I became one of those Christians who don't attend church.  I have to say, after a gentle admonition to get myself back to church, most people have been kind and not made the leap to put me in backslidden status.  I say with no sarcasm, thank you.  The fear of such a label has been the only condemnation I have experienced.  That aside, my Sundays have been unbelievably sweet.  The meaning of Sabbath has truly been revealed to me by the Holy Spirit as I have watched the sun rise and felt the realness of Emanuel, God with me. Rarely I would find some program on television and join their service from my couch.  Often I would start my morning by putting praise and worship and good ol' fashioned gospel music on The Music Channel and enter into His courts as I made my coffee.  Mostly, I would sit quietly in contemplation of a scripture or just in a spirit of waiting for Him.  I have felt the love of my Savior for me in a more personal way than I have in all of my life. 
What of the Mr. during this personal time of "home church?"  He continued to attend the last church we had attended together.  A church, frankly, that I just didn't like.  I carried on with joining him there until I felt the release of the Lord and I told Dean that there was little of spiritual growth occurring in me for my time sitting in the auditorium.  I'm sure he was disappointed on some level but in truth, he played in the band and our time actually being together at church was a matter of minutes every week despite his commitment of hours.  Driving alone, sitting alone and twenty minutes sitting side by side didn't seem to make true sense anymore when the alone time at home was filling my heart and spirit with such peace and joy. 
So, I have been "out of church" for a few years.
Just before Christmas, the Lord impressed upon Dean that the time had come (was overdue) for him to separate himself from his church and to re establish our time of worship together.  So he shared with me his master plan for finding a church and I thought, "Oh dear, my sweet quiet time is coming to an end."  Then again, I was in agreement that it was time for him to move on and certainly I should be a part of that process.  I began working on making the transition back into Church Attender and accepting that the Sunday mornings of the last few years were meant to be temporary.  I won't pretend to have been happy about this.  The Lord, being a gentle Shepherd, has given Dean a taste of that quiet Sunday morning feeling and allowed me a reprieve from church-shopping/seeking/looking.  But now, after the holidays and my surgery, the Mr. has shared that he feels the need to visit some churches.  I was honest and told him I didn't want to but that I would submit myself to the Holy Spirit's instruction and to Dean's leadership.
I told him what things made church less than attractive to me...the driving alone because he goes early and stays late because of his requirements to the band.  Of my thirty years of worshiping alone as he worshiped from the stage.  Of my frustration when after church I would either leave alone or stand around as he tore down equipment and joked with the band and basically, well, honestly, ignored me altogether.  Yes, that was a frustration that was a hurt and also an offense.  It was a truth that made me challenge, "Tell me exactly why you need me in the building while you occupy yourself with everything except me?"  Sometimes these difficult conversations need to be had in order to get on the same page, or at least to know what book the other person is reading.
So this week, we move forward.  We are attending a church just a few blocks away, a Methodist church with a traditional and contemporary service, we'll be joining the latter.
I see challenges in this process.  He is so music-focused, this is his gift and his passion and his love language to God.   I am word-driven.  I hunger for deep truth and challenging teaching.  The scripture, pure and sharper than a two edged sword is God's love language to me.  I have found not that many churches honestly meet both of us in the deep water we desire.  He dislikes Hosanna style worship (well, me too.)  I dislike sermons that feel twisted around series topics when the Word becomes an accessory to an agenda. 
I want to sit at the feet of C.S. Lewis in a quiet old church that smells of mellow wood and lemon oil.
He wants to be immersed in sound and volume.
C.S. Lewis wouldn't like that, I'm sure of it :)
Here we go, both with a little bit of anxiety about what the Lord might require of us.  I don't think we're the only ones with such a challenge.  Frankly, I think church has become a thing far from what it was intended to be and that Christians make it more complicated that it needs to be.  It is not a measure of dedication to God, the number of hours inside the building.  It is not a signature of the Divine to be loud and to flood the altars every week. It is not a social network or a country club or an identity.  It is only what reaches into the soul so deeply that it overflows into the world and covers the scars of sin and fear that is worth pursuing.  It does not start at the pulpit or in the songs, it starts at the throne of God and pours into the hearts of men and reaches out through the sermons and the music.  We have inverted the order of things. 
Now, I take what I have learned and felt and submit myself to the Lord's leading.
I'll let you know where the Mr., Jesus and I end up.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

 1. Wen makes my hair amazing.  Magical.  Glorious. 
2. Joe's Crab Shack...very delicious.
3. Treated myself to a mini spa day with a few girlfriends.  Massage, facial and mani.  Ahhhhh.
4. Having my eye lashes darkened next week with vegetable dye.  Before you comment, no, I am not worried about blindness or pigmentation staining the whites of my eyes.  It's darker fabulous eyelashes, I have my priorities.
5. A little more sunlight, birds singing in the mornings...winter is rolling away.
6.  New favorite show, Monday Mornings.
7.  One of the girlfriends mentioned in number 3 is also joining me for number 4.  She is trying to talk me into a Brazilian.  NOT GONNA HAPPEN.  I'm sticking with what works...the Hungarian ;)
8. Desperately seeking a new comforter for my bed that is exactly what I want despite the fact that I'm not sure what that might be.
9. This is how you know you're getting old, date night has to be divided between Friday and Saturday because dinner and a movie on the same evening is too exhausting.
10. Easter is in March this year, people get ready!