Friday, August 27, 2010

Coffee Talk 8.27.10

Just did it become the end of August already? Didn't summer just begin? Anyway~Hope everyone is doing well this morning. It is BEAUTIFUL outside this morning, maybe just on the nippy side which is wonderful considering the oppressive heat we have been experiencing!

Grab a cup of something and join me for a minute or two! I'll be grabbing my nice cold water because when I drink coffee, I want to gag and stuff! :) Today, I will attempt to put to rest two issues I know everyone is absolutely sick of hearing about.

1. Running, yes, I have been a good girl this week and even increased my distance a little bit. Now don't be getting all impressed, we aren't breaking any records or anything. I would guess maybe close to 2 1/2 miles and I'm not running the whole thing. I am using a program called couch potato to 5K to train myself, so I am doing a 5 minute brisk walk, run 3 minutes, walk 1 1/2, run 5 minutes, walk 2 1/2 and then repeat the run/walk cycle one time. See, not that impressive when you know all the details! BUT, I am doing it so I am proud of myself. Last week I said I had learned something and then couldn't remember what it was. Today I remember. Fridays are always my worst run. I couldn't figure out why but I was always feeling a little slow and sluggish. I think I figured it out and am pretty sure it correlates to the overindulgence in popcorn and M&M's the night before. Just sayin'. I will probably not stop eating the said popcorn and M&M's, but at least I know why it is harder to run on Friday. I like this running program because it is slowly training my body to run longer distances. It is pitiful how hard it was just to run two minutes in the beginning...but as I have consistently trained, the running, breathing, etc. is getting easier. Okay, back to that in a minute.

2. The other issue I am going to attempt to stop discussing is the opportunity that we were hoping for. The door was shut, locked and the key thrown away this week. I am disappointed but not surprised. The truth is...I want to be mad at God. I want to say how unfair it is and how good we would have been. But I just can't seem to be. God is God. He said no. His way is right, even if it isn't what I want. He can't be wrong, He is perfect so it is me who was on the wrong track.

Our verse we are memorizing this week just hit me right where I needed it right now. It says:

" Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the herd and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will take joy in the God of my salvation." Habakkuk 3:17-18

Okay, here is the Star translation for her current situation:

"Though you have an opportunity that looks great and it falls through, though your husband is completely stressed out and dissatisfied with his job, though the children you are trying to educate will probably flunk out of second grade and could possibly be incarcerated for killing one another in a fight over who has to clean the dog pen or vacuum the floor, though you aren't smart enough to teach an eight grader math and there isn't a single good school option out there to have...Yet I will rejoice in the Lord. I will take joy in the God of my Salvation."

He is still God...and this earth is temporary. It is not my home. Nothing we struggle through here can even compare to the glory that awaits His children. So, I want to be mad...but I can't. I have to just rejoice and know that His way really is best. He has something better, although I may never know or understand what that is. A few weeks ago, I couldn't have said that. At least not and mean it. A few weeks ago I would have pouted and cried and shook my fist at heaven and declared that it wasn't fair. If things weren't going to happen...why even be tempted by the opportunity...but, you see, He is training me. As I have spent more and more time in His Word and more and more time in prayer, He has been preparing me for a harder challenge. Make no mistake, I don't like it. Just like I don't like running while I am doing it. But when I am through, and I look back~I am glad I did it. I am glad I went through the struggle because I come out stronger and better than I was before.

So, let me encourage you today. Whatever trial you are going through today. No matter how big or small. You can rejoice...because we serve a God who is not taken by surprise. He is not scared, He can't be outdone. He loves you dearly. And while He may allow you to experience the pain of training...the reward WILL be worth it.

Hope everyone has a blessed weekend! Be sure to check out more Coffee Talk at Home Sanctuary.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Coffee Talk 8.20.10

Good morning Ladies,

It SHOULD be short and sweet this morning because we have started full speed ahead with school and I am late getting the kids up this morning. Not good since I haven't had a shower yet and, frankly...I smell. Even at 6 a.m., running with about 1000% humidity does not make for a pleasant odor!

On the topic of running. Dancer went with me Monday. She HATED it but is considering going with me again. I actually enjoyed having a partner, although it did slow me down considerably. B.B. said he wanted to start going but he keeps getting up in the middle of the night and coming to sleep on my floor. I told him that as long as he isn't sleeping well at night, I am NOT getting him up before 6 to run! I am so crazy that when I think of them coming...I kind of dread it. I won't get my "alone" time, I will be slowed down, but then afterwards I think, "Man, it would have been fun to run with a partner" and then there is F.B. who is on the cross country team for one of our private schools who BEGS me not to make him get up and run...he is the one who needs it! Do you know he actually WALKED during the mile of his meet last night! I groaned inwardly...we are gonna have to do some training at home!

I have learned a couple of things about running this week:

1. Although I still HATE it while I am doing it...I am so proud of myself afterwards and actually look forward to it...maybe there is hope for me!

2. I completely forgot number 2 while I was typing number one...maybe it'll come to me!

Anywhoo, as for the rest of t he week...crazy busy. Monday night we started volunteering at a local apartment doing Bible Study and meals for the residents. If it is a good fit, we will continue this throughout the school year as a local ministry. Tuesday we did a full school day and dance. Dance, ugh! Dancer has a class from 4:00-4:45 and another from 5:30-6:15. The dance studio is way out, so there isn't time to go home or do much. As a result, we are there, with Tigercub, for over 2 hours...Good times. This week it was INSANE. Hoping that calms a bit or I may have to start bringing Valium with me on dance days. Wednesday we did school, took F.B. to a physical and to have a recheck on his ear and had church, choir, etc. Thursday we took F.B. for a hearing test (due to his high number of infections and perforated ear drums) which he passed with flying colors, did school, picked up uniform for C.C. meet, went to meet, came home and had a class party for my tutorial class this year, which, incidentally, B.B. will be in. Today we have school, guitar, Dancer has a friend spending the night, and hopefully a little down time. And to think...Tutorial hasn't even started yet!

Oh! I did have a "Deep thought" I blogged about on Monday, feel free to go check it out...they don't happen often. AND, I was given a blog award by one of my sweet blogging friends, Four Little Penguins. She is my home schooling idol! She like actually has ideas and DOES them and takes pictures and blogs about them, Amazing! Anyway, the award was called the Sunshine Award and is super sweet, unfortunately, after far too much time trying to figure out this @#$% Mac computer, I have given up trying to copy the award. She also came up with a million or like 12 bloggers to give it to. I don't even read that many blogs anymore, so, I figure. If you have hung on here this long totally deserve the award. Hop over to her blog, search around until you find it and give it to yourself!

I know, this is typically not short. But reading the above paragraph made me think, in Bible Study the last couple of weeks, our leader has been having us think about everyday objects that describe us. Some of the ladies said Swiss army knife (able to do a lot of things, organized), dark chocolate (either you love me or you hate me), etc. I said a pin ball. I am just being whacked around all over the place and I am about as scattered as can be! is too soon in the school year to be like this!!! So, what about you? What everyday object describes you?

For more Coffee Talk, go to Home Sanctuary!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Opened Doors

Yet another day of deep thoughts...don't get used to it, school has started and even with just a partial schedule, things are already getting crazy!

Teaching Sunday School yesterday, I had some new thoughts (for me) about an old story and what better place to share. This may just be my new favorite Bible Story for awhile. The story, Paul and Silas in jail. You know the one. Paul and Silas are imprisoned for sharing Jesus. Because they are such "bad dudes", they are put in shackles and placed in the middle of the prison. The part saved for the really bad criminals. They are put under guard. They don't whine or complain, instead, they sing. They praise God in the midst of imprisonment. And then, the floor starts shaking, the shackles fall off, the doors of the prison are opened. The perfect chance for escape! The guard, realizing he must have lost all his prisoners prepares to kill himself. And then...before he does anything crazy...Paul and Silas announce that all the prisoners are still there.

Okay, so I've heard the story a million times. I have heard lessons, and even taught them, about how they worshipped in the jail, yada, yada, yada. But yesterday, something else struck me. I know it is because of our recent circumstances, but I like it anyway. You see, in our culture, in our church, we always talk about open doors. If God is leading you somewhere, the doors will open. If you are headed in the wrong direction, He will close them. It is a lovely, comforting thought. The path seems so clear. And yet, in this story, the door opens...but Paul and Silas...they stay. They didn't walk through that open door. I'm sure they wanted to. I'm sure as they sat in that prison, they longed to be free. Maybe they talked about what they might have been doing. Maybe they had a strategy session for what they would do when they got out of there. I wonder if they felt frustrated that their ministry was being slowed down because of this little bump in the road. They may have wept for those they wouldn't get to talk to because they were "locked up".

I can only imagine what was going through the minds of the prisoners as the shaking began and the shackles fell off. And most of all, I wonder...why did they stay? Of course, Paul and Silas, despite that opened door must have felt the Spirit of God telling them to stay. But what about the others. There may have been some rough characters in there. Surely they longed to be free themselves...and what an opportunity. What held them there? Was it the darkness? The guard called for lights, but that was only after the prisoners told him not to kill himself. Was it amazement, did they think they had more time? Why did they stay? If I had been there...would I have stayed? Didn't that open door mean go? I am really fascinated by this right now. They stayed.

And I think about where we are right now. There was a door I thought was open, and I was ready to go through. Now, in our situation, the door seems to have closed and we are staying because, well, we have no choice. But sometimes, it seems, God calls us to stay. Even when we want to go. Even when it seems we have so much to offer on the other side. Even when we are frustrated because staying seems so fruitless. God called them to stay. God seems, for now, to be calling us to say. I can pout, I can fuss, I can cry and complain. Or I can sing. I can praise and maybe, just maybe I can have an impact right here.

Do you know the end of the story? The guard invites Paul and Silas to his home where they share the good news and the guard, along with his whole family believed and were baptized. I wonder, how many more believed after? How many people did the guard share with? How many ladies heard the story as they drew water from the well? All because they stayed. And so, while my heart longs to go...I will stay. I will try to have an impact, I will try to share the story, I will try to do it with a good attitude and maybe some one's life will be changed just because we stayed.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Coffee Talk 8.13.10

Good Morning Ladies! I hope today finds everyone doing well. Grab a drink...I prefer something nice and cold since temperatures around here are something akin the the gates of, well, a very unpleasant place. On the bright side, I heard a report yesterday that next week things will be cooling off and we will get to enjoy a week of nice, cool 90 degree weather, UGH!

I am going to just list my rambling thoughts today because otherwise, no one will be able to follow the jumble that is in my head.

1. I started running...okay walking with an occasional run to make me feel better...again this week. I had started training for a 5K last winter and was stopped dead in my tracks by planter's fascitis. If you haven't had the joy of that little foot condition, thank God today! Anyway, I woke up this week and realized that while I still have some pain and soreness, the stretching, etc. has worked and I can actually walk around and wear cute shoes without wanting to scream! So, I decided to get back into training. I think one word can wrap up how I feel...OW!

2. We started school this week. Not because I wanted to but all the schools in town have started and we like to take breaks, etc. when they do so the kids can hang out with their friends. I am really beginning to think this whole school thing is overrated. If we were Amish, this would be my oldest son's last year. Hmmmm, something to think about!

3. I am making my oldest son read a book called "Do Hard Things" written by teenage boys to encourage teenagers to rise above low expectations. I have been reading along with him...ya know, so I can give him assignments, lord it over him and throw in the occasional, "son, you can do better than hard things." Anywhoo, the book is kicking ME in the tail! In fact, it is reading that book that kept me going on my run this morning when I really just wanted to throw in the towel.

4. I HATE running. Runners always say how much they love it. I wonder how long you have to do it before you stop saying, "I would rather have a tooth pulled with no anesthesia than go out there and run again this morning." Cause, I really want to like it. I really want to get that great feeling of refreshment and satisfaction. Instead, I kind of feel like I want to throw up. And my legs hurt. I really don't enjoy running.

5. My baby is growing up too fast. He is so cute! I just love to hang out with him. He loves to play, and talk, and sing, and laugh. He is really a joy. But he is growing so fast. I want to cherish the moments I have with him being little. Although, if he wanted to just volunteer to start pottying in the toilet with no effort on my part...I would be totally cool with that.

6. If you read earlier this week, I had a minor breakdown. I am doing better. I am trying to accept God's will for us...but sometimes MY will just seems so good, ya know? Anyway, a lot of my frustration has come because of a ministry opportunity I thought we might have. Since reading "Radical" I have really been impressed that I need to search for opportunities to minister and share Christ with people. I need to be deliberate about it. So, I began praying and this opportunity presented itself. The timing seemed good and I was excited about it but it hasn't come least not yet. As I pondered, okay pouted, about the situation, I realized that I have been so focused on this ministry that MIGHT happen but I am missing opportunities all around me that I can do RIGHT NOW. These words from Jeremiah really spoke to me this morning as I was doing my Bible reading,

"I know, O LORD, that a man's life is not his own;
it is not for man to direct his steps."
Jeremiah 10:23

I may have been having a bit of a pity party because my plan seemed so good and right and had such good timing. But it is not for me to decide. And the fact of the matter is...God is good all the time, so if He says no to this, it is because He has something better in mind. I may not ever know what it is. I may never see it. But I know it to be true because of the nature of God. Don't get me wrong. I am still stubbornly praying that option one still happens. But in the meantime, I am seeking ways to minister and share Jesus right here where I am.

Well, I could go on with these rambling thoughts, I've got a million of them in me today...but, frankly, I need a shower and I need to start school and clean house, and do my Bible Study, I look forward to visiting with you all over the weekend. Hope you have a great one and be sure to check out Home Sanctuary for more Coffee Talk.

Monday, August 9, 2010


I HATE change! I HATE it! I go into it kicking and screaming. I hate it so much that once you walk into my have seen it. The furniture will never change. The "stuff" lying around as decorations will still be there years from now. I cook the same meals, go to the same restaurants and wear the same clothes all the time. When I find something in a restaurant that I like, I will order that item forever. No matter how they change the menu. No matter how delicious something else looks, I won't change. I HATE going to new stores, new restaurants or new places. I just really hate change.

And would think that a few weeks ago, when a potential change presented itself, I would have dreaded it. I normally wouldn't have even thought twice. And yet, something about it called to me. It seemed right. I began looking forward and thinking, with excitement all that this change could mean. I had fun daydreaming and making plans...just in case. I pictured how things "could be" and I actually looked forward to it, embracing change, desiring change.

And now...well now, it seems that change may not be happening after all. It seems that things may just stay the same. Maybe the change will happen, eventually, but not in my timing, and I find myself staring sameness in the face. I don't like it. Now, the thought of another year of the same thing is KILLING me!

I could cry at the thought of another year home schooling a jr. high student. I dread the thought of entertaining a two year old while I try to do Spelling with a second grader. A year with TWO children doing Science Fair sends shutters down my spine. Another season of Bible Study and Sunday School and Dance and Guitar. I'm adding a thing or two, a ministry at a local apartment, FB is running cross country...but I am so depressed by what usually brings me evidenced by the MOUNTAINS of processed food I have eaten in the last week.

Why is it I have so much trouble being content? I'm not sure why I cannot just trust God's hand and His plan. I'm not sure why I so often question when He is so faithful...but that is what I am doing right now. I'm not sure why I am even sharing this in such a public way except that I need to get it out, I need to express my heart. I have poured this out to God...He says wait. Pitifully, I have no 3 a.m. friends to whine to right now, so the world wide web gets it instead. On the upside, when you don't post for weeks at a time, people stop reading and there is a very good chance I will just get this off my chest and no one else will ever read it...that is okay. I just need to vent.

So, I'm off. We have begun school and math is is Tigercub who does not appreciate Momma, his summer playmate, putting him off for unimportant things like reading and phonics. Maybe we will finish early and go out to the pool. Tigercub can nap, the big kids can swim, and I can dream about what might have been! Maybe I'll write a country music song! I can feel one coming on!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Note to Self:

Dear Self,

You are no longer 18. You are getting old. Therefore, you can no longer do some of the fun, carefree things you used to do.

Just because that diet soda looks so cool and refreshing, if you drink it at eight o' clock p.m. you WILL be up...all night. It is not worth it. Drink the water. You will sleep and it is free.

If you stay out in the MUST use sunscreen. Although you do tan easily, the sun will dry out your skin and you will be up...all night scratching at an endless itch. It is not worth it.

Finally, for several months now, you have eaten almost totally vegetarian. Although you have had a few forays into the meat eating world, they are few and far between. Why you thought it was a good idea to eat TWO meals containing meat in one day, I am not sure. However, the results are in. The heartburn and general blahs that it causes are quite awful. You WILL be up...all night. It is not worth it.

While being up all night was typical way back when. It is no longer fun and your children will suffer for it in the morning. Please remember this next time your are tempted to, again, take leave of all your senses in one weekend.

Yours truly,