God can Heal a Broken Heart but He has to have all the Pieces.

Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength, they will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

December 26, 2010

I am NOT in charge...

I have once again been shown by God how quickly life changes and how I have absolutely no control over my life. He has the steering wheel and though I often do not like where he takes me, he makes me depend on him more and put my life at his feet.
Christmas Day started very early for us. At 2AM we had to make the difficult choice to have to put one of our dogs to sleep. He has been with my husband for 12 years and with me for 8. He is our other dogs best friend and now to hear her whimper breaks my heart. He was a 12 year old boxer and most boxers do not live past 8. He had a good life, he was a great dog, and will be missed dearly. It happened in a matter of a few hours. One day he was good, the next a very sick baby. The decision we made was the best for him because he was in a tremendous amount of pain. But just because we did not want him to go did not mean that God wasn't ready for him to come. I told my husband to tell him when he got to heaven to go find Richard. I have complete confidence that my brother was already waiting for him.
As I was at home waiting for news from my husband as to what was wrong with him, I found myself questioning God. Why would he make our dog sick on Christmas Eve of all days, why would you want me to endure another loss this year, haven't I had enough? I felt so terrible for my husband. I knew the pain of grief and felt his hurt. The loss for me was piled on top of the fact that this was a day I had dreaded most of the year and now I had to bring it in losing another part of my life. I was wrapping gifts, getting the girls stuff together, and complaining to God. Then I heard a preacher that was on the TV say, "God loves you more than you even like yourself." Let me just say how horrible I felt to have been asking God why and telling him how much I didn't really need this right now. God loves us SO much that he sent his one and only Son for us. On the day we celebrate the birth of the one who paid for our sins on the Cross.
I had dreaded this day and I am now sad to see it go. It marks the official first Christmas without my brother. I missed him this morning when he did not walk through my door, I had opened gifts with him for the past 27 years and today I did not.
I did make it through today. I was able to go back to bed, thanks to my husband, after we had Christmas with the girls. I was able to sleep through the time my brother had come to my home for the past 7 years. Always getting there early and just as giddy as a 5 year old.
I think about what Christmas must be like in heaven. I imagine he had the best Christmas yet, spending it with the one who gives us our way to heaven, Jesus Christ.
As the day came to an end and I reflected upon it, 1 Peter 1:6-7 was placed in front of me while I was looking through my Bible.
In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
I continue to hold strong in my faith, knowing that these things will not be wasted. I will continue to grow, continue to learn, continue to struggle, continue to hurt, but I have assurance that God is in control and I am not. For he knows the plans he has for us, and those plans are not to bring us harm. There is a reason for every season in life. And though I do not understand I will persevere. For it is He who gives me strength.
With Love,

December 23, 2010

Making God Smile

This time of year we praise God for the gift he has given to us in Jesus Christ. While this is the meaning of Christmas and one of our duties as a Christian, we too must remember our part of the plan. We find ways to fulfill our purpose in life in Rick Warren's book, The Purpose Driven Life. The ultimate goal of the universe is to show the glory of God. It is the reason for everything that exists, including you. Romans 11:36 (LB) "For everything comes from God alone. Everything lives by his power, and everything is for his glory."
Making God smile is the goal of our life. The bible says, "Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it." The life of Noah gives us an example of how to make God smile. The Bible says, "This guy brings me pleasure. He makes me smile. I'll start over with his family."Because Noah brought God pleasure, we are alive today." His life shows us 5 acts of worship that make God smile.
1. God smiles when we love him supremely. Hosea 6:6 " I don't want your sacrifices-I want your love; I don't want your offerings-I want you to know me."
2. God smiles when we trust him completely. "He takes pleasure in those that honor Him; in those who trust in His constant love." Psalm 147:11 (TEV)
3. God smiles when we obey him wholeheartedly. "We please God by what we do and  not only by what we believe." James 2:24 (CEV)
4. God smiles when we praise and thank him continually. "The righteous are glad and rejoice in his presence; they are happy and shout for joy." Psalm 68:3 (TEV)
5. God smiles when we use our abilities. "The steps of the godly are directed by the Lord. He delights in every detail of their lives." Psalm 37:23 (NIV)

"The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who are wise, who want to please God." Psalm 14:2 (LB)

In his book there is a poem by Russell Kelfer that is fitting for the trials in my life and most likely in yours. Take comfort in knowing these words. "The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us." Romans 12:3
You are who you are for a reason.
You're part of an intricate plan.
You're a precious and perfect unique design,
Called God's special woman or man.
You look like you look for a reason.
Our God made no mistake.
He knit you together within the womb,
You're JUST what he wanted to make.
The parents you had were the ones he chose,
And no matter how you may feel,
They were custom-designed with God's plan in mind,
And they bear the Master's seal.
No, the trauma you faced was not easy.
And God wept that it hurt you so;
But it was allowed to shape your heart
So that into his likeness you'd grow.
You are who you are for a reason,
You've been formed by the Master's rod.
You are who you are, beloved,
Because there is a God!!
With Love and wishing you all a Merry Christmas filled with peace, joy, and love,

December 21, 2010

I had been putting off going to my brother’s grave because it often makes me too upset. I wanted to go see the tree my mom had put there and hang the angel ornament I had gotten him and to see the wreath my grandmother had hung on the tree he lays beneath. I decided to stop by before going to work Sunday. I knew I just wanted to sit there on his bench and talk to him for a while. I had so much built up inside me that I wanted to say. There have been so many things take place recently that I just don't understand, and I know God never intended for us to know. But that doesn't make it easier, as humans we are wired to question, inquire, and make decisions based on fact.
As I sat there talking to him with the cold wind hitting my face I stopped and I heard these words,“Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10. It was what I needed to hear, not my own voice telling me what to do, how to do it, or what I needed to do more of. All of my self doubting, criticizing, and the pity I had been dwelling on were made weak in my mind. All along I just needed to stop, be quiet, be still, knowing that he is God. He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
   I will be exalted among the nations,
   I will be exalted in the earth.”
 Silence is medication for sorrow.  ~Arab Proverb
 You can hear the footsteps of God when silence reigns in the mind.  ~Sri Sathya Sai Baba
 With the busyness and hectic lives we lead today, we often forget to just stop and listen, ask for his help, and seek him to find peace when we just don't get it.

December 17, 2010

Failures as a Mom

Naturally as moms we often wonder if what we are doing is enough, are we doing the right things, do we teach them enough, are we teaching them right from wrong, teaching them how to be kind, generous, giving, a good friend and thousands of other questions we ponder daily.
Lately, I feel like I have failed in many of these areas. I get easily agitated, aggrevated, lose patience, get mad, and say or do things I wish I could take back. I feel like I have failed at being a mom, failed at being a good role model, and failed in passing the test.
With all our hearts we want to make our kids happy, please them, do things you know they would love. Today, we took our girls to ride The Macy's Pink Pig at Lenox. This was right after the school Christmas party this morning that I struggled to get to. I had gotten 3 hours of sleep and was irritated at myself for not being able to go to sleep earlier, for not having the kids gifts done, and the teacher's gifts finished. So at 7am I am trying to get an impossible almost 5 yr old dressed b/c of outfit malfunctions such as the socks not fitting right, the pants aren't how she likes them, etc. We have the same battle almost daily in regards to how her clothing feels, fits, or she all of a sudden doesn't like it. My husband tried to help but she refused his offerings as well. He tries to help me with the gifts and I am grumpy and mad at myself. I can only partially blame myself for the lack of sleep b/c I did work until 1am and do not get home and then ready for bed until 2am. But I was unable to sleep, maybe I should have tried harder before I got up to vent on my blog.
On our way there I get complaints of potty breaks needed, a 2 yr old who keeps saying "hungry" but refuses everything I try to give her, cries, whines, etc. All before the interstate. I am frustrated and I get frustrated at them.
At the mall, one incident of wanting a cookie but not wanting to take the elevator to get there so she starts whining, I use the if you are going to whine you don't get a cookie but that ends up in the outcome of getting a cookie due to looks of bad mommy from my husband. We get the cookie and of course a NEEDED drink. Then she has to go to the restroom, my husband goes onto the car with our 2 yr old. At the restroom, she refuses to use it and wants to use the portable potty in the car. This is an often scenario we face on a regular basis. She will NOT use a potty that flushes itself and in this case the bathroom was too loud. We leave, get to car, potty, and are on our way. Then the "Are we there yet, I want to be home begins." Followed by another MUST have potty break right as my friend calls (the one person who has called me all week b/c I rarely get to use the phone) so I have to let her go, we pull over, use the portable potty (which ended up in much frustrated being taken out on her by me). Seconds later complaints of being hungry begin from both of them. I start self criticizing  myself, wondering why I get so frustrated, aggrevated and then regret my actions. I have failed as a mother. My one day off with them in a 9 day stretch and I have spent it completely annoyed and flustered at every request. Why do I feel like a complete failure, everything I try to do ends up being the wrong response. I try to warn my oldest that if she keeps whining she will go to her room when she gets home. This only incurs further whining from her and screams from the other one. Did I do this to them? Have I allowed them to be fulfilled at every request that they can't wait, everything has to be RIGHT then? Failure sets in.
The whole time my husband is listening to his Ipod like the world is oblivious to him. I get aggitated at that too. I get further annoyed as the seconds continue and we have to make one other stop at the grocery store b/c we HAVE to have bakery cinnamon rolls for breakfast or another conflict will take place. My husband decides he would go in and thankfully hands me the Ipod. Heaven, I crank up Snoop Dog and reminice on my younger days of worries filled with boys, homework, and friends. Remembering the nights my best friend and I would drive around in my Camaro singing outloud to good old Snoop. I am now sitting in a car listening to two kids whining, wondering what went wrong. How did I end up a failure as a mom?
Now we are going on 45 minutes of the constant "I'm hungry" cries. My husband, of course, tries to diffuse the situation by trying to play games, be funny, sing songs, etc. I wonder why can't I do that? Why do I instantly get so irritated and give up going straight to threats? Failure sets in.
Kuddos to the moms who handle more than 2 b/c I think I would have to check myself into a mental facility just to get peace.

Weekend Mingling

Trying to understand harsh words...

I have had such a heavy heart today that I felt the need to write about it in hopes to come to some sort of enlightenment or acceptance maybe about recent events. I am a very quick tempered person. I have improved tremendously and think that I have done very well in a lot of situations lately where I could easily find myself wasting anger or hoarding anger towards something/someone. It has, like most things, been picking at my brain and it just won't stop. And I just cannot bring myself to draw any type of normal conclusion to a situation (well, the lack of knowing the situation even existed in the first place), where someone would go and make such harsh accusations with no knowledge of the actual truth. This makes me even more irritated in that it is so openly directed towards my family. At a time when selfishness and narcissistic behavior, you may call it, should NOT even be a part of an event so devastating to my family. The actual audacity to make a statement that would even come close to acknowledging that ANYONE should be grieving more than another. A mother who gave birth to her son, a father who taught him, a sister who worried and wanted to always protect her little brother, leaving behind a younger brother, too young to understand, yet only knowing that he has lost the person he wanted to be, his identity of a brother taken from him only to be left with a sister who doesn't understand "guy things." And the actual fact that you would leave such a statement so clearly written, visible. for all of us to see. That my husband would have to sneak to go get it before I would find it. I can understand that he may have been your whole world for the past few years that you knew him. But he was our world for 27. No, we didn't know his secrets or inner most thoughts the last years of his life. But who tells that to your sister or parents when you are 27. Especially a sister who was constantly nagging you b/c she knew you better than the way you had changed . There is no need to explain the relationship, bonds, and memories a family holds. Each of our pain is different and I cannot discredit nor dimish anyone's feelings. I can only take from it the hurt, the stab at aching hearts, and the scars from someone I never discredited as a person. Always recognizing and never judging, someone I never meant to hurt but has hurt me. As I have tried to make sense of it and ponder the reasons I do see a small amount of confusion that may have been taking place. But instead of a simple inquisition, harsh words were replaced. Another lesson of things I will never understand, a "why" question.
Proverbs 15:1 A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
So I will rid myself of anger, take note of what has already been done, and move ahead in the truths as I know them to be.

December 14, 2010

Call your sibling today...Sibling grief

Siblings Walking Together
(Formerly The Sibling Credo)
We are the surviving siblings of The Compassionate Friends.
We are brought together by the deaths of our brothers and sisters.
Open your hearts to us, but have patience with us.
Sometimes we will need the support of our friends.
At other times we need our families to be there.
Sometimes we must walk alone, taking our memories with us,
continuing to become the individuals we want to be.
We cannot be our dead brother or sister;
however, a special part of them lives on with us.
When our brothers and sisters died, our lives changed.
We are living a life very different from what we envisioned,
and we feel the responsibility to be strong even when we feel weak.
Yet we can go on because we understand better than many others
the value of family and the precious gift of life.
Our goal is not to be the forgotten mourners that we sometimes are,
but to walk together to face our tomorrows as surviving siblings of The Compassionate Friends.

Written on the Compassionate Friends website
I have posted below some information from Compassionate Friends about adult grief when a sibling dies.I have highlighted the one's that have affected me the most. As the holidays approach the days get harder and harder. I have to continue on my walk with Christ, focusing each day on him and the strength he gives me. In talking or reading about others who have had the same loss I know there will not be a day that I won't think of him. But God will heal the wound slowly and lessen the pain. Psalms 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds.

I want to remember him, I want to help out others who endure the same loss, I want everyone to know that without Christ you will never survive it. You will crumble and fall into a trapped closet with a locked door and the keys thrown away. You won't escape. Until you accept God's hands reaching out for you, accepting Him into your life, knowing that he is our Savior, he is the source for our daily lives, and surrendering it all to Him. Only then will the darkness fade away as you start to see the light shine through a little bit at a time. Psalm 18:28 For thou wilt light my candle; the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.

When a sibling dies, the world changes in a heartbeat.
Each family has its own special history and the shared bonds that are a part of that history. When a sibling dies, the bonds are shattered, and the history forever has a void that cannot be filled.

As they grow, children develop certain characteristics and talents. Brothers and sisters tend to complement each other by developing a balance of interests in different areas. However, surviving siblings will need to redefine their roles in the absence of this relationship.
When your parents die, it is said you lose your past; when your spouse dies, you lose your present; and when your child dies, you lose your future. However, when your sibling dies, you lose a part of your past, your present, and your future.

•Survivor guilt is normal. Siblings usually have a relationship where they seek to protect each other. Despite the physical distance that may separate them as adults, this need to have provided protection weighs heavily in the aftermath of the loss.

•Guilt about how the relationship was maintained is common. So often as adults, the sibling relationship has changed from younger years.. Each travels a separate path, and sometimes communication is lacking and ambivalent feelings about maintaining the relationship surface. No matter how good a relationship may have been, the survivor often believes it should have been better, causing guilt.
•Surviving siblings may find positive changes within their lives. These may include greater emotional strength, increased independence, and a soul-searching reexamination of religious beliefs. Some survivors feel the need to make a change in their life’s work, such as becoming a therapist, or working to effect a change in the area that took the life of the sibling.
Even when a sibling has died, a connection still remains. Surviving brothers and sisters think about them; talk about them; remember them at special times such as birthdays, holidays, and death dates; and may create a memorial of some type. This connection with the sibling who died does not have to be given up to move forward in life.
Siblings may be ambivalent about their relationships in life, but in death the power of their bond strangles the surviving heart. Death reminds us that we are part of the same river, the same flow from the same source, rushing towards the same destiny. Were you close? Yes, but we didn’t know it then.
Barbara Ascher
Landscape Without Gravity
With Love,

Tasting nothing, coffee, to the top, and PINT 4 today

To-the-TOP Tuesday
Go over and check out the hop at To The Top hosted by One Little Mister and Frugal Plus

Only Parent Chronicles

Since I don't really cook or have any creative or fabulous recipes like everyone else, I need coffee! Lots and lots of coffee! And some Dayquil and Nyquil on the side. I started my new position at my work yesterday and am now working until 1AM, so yes, coffee is a necessity. I am usually up until 1 anyway but being at work until 1 is completely different. By the time I get home and in bed it's 2AM. And to top it all off, my very first day I am sick. The kind of sick where I went through a whole box of Kleenex blowing my nose, red faced, red eyes, a head that feels like it's going to explode and a congested chest. Really great first impression as a supervisor. There was no way I could have even talked to a customer I sounded so terrible. And today, not any better. I had the whole place staring at me, not only because I am their new supervisor but because I was obnoxiously blow my nose and sniffling the ENTIRE night!!! I was so embarassed, so today my tasy treats will be plenty of Dayquil, coffee, and maybe a bit of food on the side. Happy Tuesday!!
With Love,

December 13, 2010

Twenty Quotes About Murder

This isn't a very happy post but I wanted to share it with a few of my family so I am posting it here. I believe it is very important because of the high crime rate of killers. I NEVER thought my brother would be murdered but sometimes nightmares come true. Your life can be turned around in a second, literally, you never know where a perpetrator may be lingering so we must be aware of our surroundings at all times. We must be aware for our children especially because of all the evil and petifiles being left out on the streets. Just read the article and make yourself a little familiar.
I got this article from Kidnapping, Murder, and Mayhem. It is a blog by writer Robert A. Waters who follows unsolved cases, modern and historial crimes. We can never have too much information when it comes to the protection of our loved ones. Crime is more prevelant around holidays and with the economic downturn. Make sure we are attentive. There are some great scriptures in here too. I have highlighted those that mean the most to me.

Murder quotesCompiled by Robert A. Waters

"There's the scarlet thread of murder running through the colorless skein of life, and our duty is to unravel it, and isolate it, and expose every inch of it." Sir Arthur Conan Doyle from the Sherlock Holmes book, A Study in Scarlet.

"There are 4 kinds of Homicide: felonious, excusable, justifiable, and praiseworthy." Ambrose Bierce, Writer.

"Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder." Arnold J. Toynbee, Historian.

"What the detective story is about is not murder but the restoration of order." P. D. James, Author.

"I didn’t want to harm the man. I thought he was a very nice gentleman. Soft-spoken. I thought so right up to the moment I cut his throat." Perry Smith, as quoted by Truman Capote in the classic true crime book, In Cold Blood.

"Deliver me from the workers of iniquity, and save me from bloody men." Psalm 59:1-3, New King James version.
"You feel the last bit of breath leaving their body. You're looking into their eyes. A person in that situation is God!" Ted Bundy, serial killer.
"The boys with their feet on the desks know that the easiest murder case in the world to break is the one somebody tried to get very cute with; the one that really bothers them is the murder somebody only thought of two minutes before he pulled it off." Raymond Chandler, Author.
"It is impossible to say how first the idea entered my brain, but, once conceived, it haunted me day and night." Edgar Allan Poe, from "The Tell-Tale Heart."

"These concerns (for orphan children in India and elsewhere in the world) are very good, but often these same people are not concerned with the millions that are killed by the deliberate decision of their own mothers..." Mother Teresa (1910-1997).

"I know what you're thinking. Did he fire six shots or only five? Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I've kinda lost track myself. But being as this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya punk?" Clint Eastwood, in the movie Dirty Harry.

"Political language...is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." George Orwell, Author.

"You shall not murder." Deuteronomy 5:17, New King James version.
"The very emphasis of the commandment: Thou shalt not kill, makes it certain that we are descended from an endlessly long chain of generations of murderers, whose love of murder was in their blood as it is perhaps also in ours." Sigmund Freud, Psychoanalyst.

"I never killed a man who didn't need it." Clay Allison, western outlaw.

"Unnatural death always provoked a peculiar unease, an uncomfortable realization that there were still some things that might not be susceptible to bureaucratic control." P.D. James.

"You know, everybody uses this word [closure] and banters it around...I don't have any closure and most parents of murdered children or crime victims don't really have closure because your life is changed forever by that event." John Walsh, whose son Adam was kidnapped and murdered.
"There is a legitimate argument over whether the death penalty effectively deters violent crime, although my personal observation is that not one of the criminals who have been executed over the years has ever killed again." Dinesh D'Souza, Author.

"I can't express the feeling. I felt so much better. I'm so glad Florida has the guts to keep the electric chair. At least there was a split second of pain. With lethal injection, you just go to sleep." Raymond Neal, brother of murder victim Ramona Neal, after serial murderer Gerald Stano was executed for her slaying.

"There is a generation that curses its father, And does not bless its mother. There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, Yet is not washed from its filthiness. There is a generation--oh, how lofty are their eyes! And their eyelids are lifted up. There is a generation whose teeth are like swords, And whose fangs are like knives..." Proverbs 30: 11-14, New King James version.

With all my love and blessings to you all on this Monday!

December 12, 2010

Welcome to Monday

Sippy Cups and Cloth Bums


Comment Issues

So apparentally my comment section decided to go on hiatus and leave my blog. Sorry if you wanted to comment or if you were a new follower. I have fixed it and you should be able to comment now.

Worldwide Candle Lighting

Don't forget the candle lighting done through Compassionate Friends. You can simply light a candle in your home and say a prayer for those who were taken from us far too soon. The worldwide lighting takes place at 7pm. Here is the link to the Remembrance Book  if you would like to read it. Very heart wrenching.
With Love on this day as we remember,

It's Officially HER Day!

Name pronunciation: ZOH-ee

Origin of name: Greek
Meaning of name: Life, abundant life
The Story Behind This Historical Christian Name
There are several notable historical Christian women who had the name Zoe, including two empresses in the Byzantine empire and St. Zoe, a Roman noblewoman martyred for her faith during Emperor Diocletian’s persecution of the Christian church.
Scriptures for the Girl Name Zoe
Note the word “life” in each of these scriptures (partial list, not all instances in the New Testament) — that is the Greek word “Zoe”:
Matthew 19:29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife[a] or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.

John 1:4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.

John 3:15-16 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
John 4:14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[a] Christ Jesus our Lord.

Colossians 3:4 When Christ, who is your[a] life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

James 1:12  Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
1 John 2:25 And this is what he promised us—eternal life.

1 John 5:11-12 And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
Christian Meaning of Names

Happy 2nd Birthday to my joyful, life filled child. You bring me constant joy, relief from my pain, a smile to always put on my face, big hugs and kisses, sweetness, often times a close heart attack, and an absolute life. You made our family complete.
I did not know Zoe was in the Bible nor did I know what the meaning of your name was. I read a little about it when it came up in Max Lucado's book John 3:16, so tonight I thought I would google the meaning and the above is just what I found.  Now, I know that it truly is a perfect description of my Zoe. Full of LIFE! I love you baby girl...forever and ever.



December 11, 2010

Writing Workshop-Enchanted

Mama's Losin' It

A love story comes to mind when I first think of enchanted. A magical love story filled with romance and beauty. Think Cinderella with castles, carriages, and princes. Where the prince comes in and saves the damsel in distress.

Aren’t we all damsels in distress? Don’t we all want a magical, enchanting life, filled with joy and happiness, having no struggles, trials, or insecurities? Don’t we all want a Savior to come in and rescue us? One who will make everything right, take care of us, watch over us, and fulfill our needs. Who will be there even when we mess up, are on the verge of destruction, not able to handle it, or feeling lost and confused. If we seek, we shall find this kind of enchanted love story.
Our love story has already begun, long before we even knew it. In our mother’s womb, he set his eyes on us. God’s love for us is more than we could ever get even a glimpse of in our mortal lives. There are many words in the Bible that express God’s love; divine, pure, unconditional, and forgiving, never changing, unfailing, never ending, and the list can go on and on.
Love is defined in Wikipedia as an intense feeling of affection. God’s love is more than a feeling, it is Him. He is love. God is love. 1 John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
Our prince has already come to heal us, bind up our wounds, forgive us, fulfill our needs, give us hope for the future, strength, comfort, peace, a shoulder to lean on, a friend, a confidant, give us mercy, grace, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self control? This only names a few of the riches in God. God defined love in
1 Corinthians 13: 4-7
Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
That is enchanted.

December 10, 2010

Weekend Hopping


So Followed Saturday


Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting

I wanted to write a post strictly about the Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting. It is this Sunday, December 12th at 7PM. You can do this from your home and just say a prayer for a friend, family, or even someone you have lost. The power of prayer for those who need comforting is amazing. So let's remember those we have lost and the families left to grieve by lighting a candle in remembrance.
I have created an event for this on Facebook so you can comment on someone you know or that you are lighting the candle for. You can put something about that person, why they were special, or any information you would like to share about them. The link is http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=183074995041113&num_event_invites=0#!/event.php?eid=183074995041113&index=1
This is a video from the 2009 Candle Lighting.

From Compassionate Friends Website:
Excitement has been building as the fourteenth Worldwide Candle Lighting December 12, 2010 approaches. The Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting unites family and friends around the globe in lighting candles for one hour to honor and remember children who have died at any age from any cause. As candles are lit at 7 p.m. local time, creating a virtual wave of light, hundreds of thousands of persons commemorate and honor the memory of children in a way that transcends all ethnic, cultural, religious, and political boundaries.

Now believed to be the largest mass candle lighting on the globe, the Worldwide Candle Lighting, a gift to the bereavement community from The Compassionate Friends, creates a virtual 24-hour wave of light as it moves from time zone to time zone. Hundreds of formal candle lighting events are held and thousands of informal candle lightings are conducted in homes as families gather in quiet remembrance of children who have died, but will never be forgotten. The Worldwide Candle Lighting started in the United States in 1997 as a small Internet observance but has since swelled in numbers as word has spread throughout the world of the remembrance.
In 2009, information was submitted to TCF's national website on services in 15 countries outside the United States. In total, we received nearly 530 services. TCF has been joined in recent years by chapters of several organizations including MISS, MADD, Parents of Murdered Children, SIDS Network, Gilda's Club, and BPUSA and services were held in all 50 states plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico. There is no way to know how many hundreds of additional services were held in the U.S. and around the world without the information being to us.
The Compassionate Friends and allied organizations were joined in 2009 by local bereavement groups, churches, funeral homes, hospitals, hospices, children's gardens, schools, cemeteries, and community centers. Services have ranged in size from just a few people to nearly a thousand.
You are also invited to post a message in the Remembrance Book which will be available during the event at TCF's national website. Last year in that short one day span, thousands of messages were received and posted from every U.S. state and Washington D.C., every territory, as well as dozens of other countries, some in foreign languages. The Remembrance Book will remain accessible to read until the 2011 Worldwide Candle Lighting.
Here in the United States, publicity about the event is widespread, being featured over the years in Dear Abby, Annie's Mailbox, Ann Landers column, Parade Magazine, Guideposts magazine, and literally hundreds of U.S. newspapers, dozens of television stations, and numerous websites and hundreds of personal blogs. Information on the Worldwide Candle Lighting and planned memorial candle lighting services (of which we are advised) is posted on TCF's national website every year as the event nears.
If no Worldwide Candle Lighting service was held near you in 2009, please feel free to plan one open to the public this year. You are welcome to use TCF's "Suggestions to Help Plan a Memorial Service in Conjunction with The Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting©" to help in planning the service. All allied bereavement organizations, churches, funeral homes, hospices and formal and informal bereavement groups are invited to join in the remembrance. Don't forget to return to this site later this year before the Worldwide Candle Lighting and submit the event information form so TCF can list your service with the many hundreds held in the United States and around the world. The Worldwide Candle Lighting gives bereaved families everywhere the opportunity to remember their child . . . that their light may always shine!
With Love,

December 9, 2010

Whatever you want to call it today

I haven't posted in a few days but I have been trying to stay off the computer this week, focusing a little more on my family and husband. After all they are the most important and sometimes get put on the backburner for a world of blogging where I feel like I have an escape from reality and a place to share my thoughts which have helped me during this time of my life. A few things have gone on this week and I just wanted to share some thoughts/ramblings/or whatever you want to call it.
I have still been reading Luke for the 24 days of Rediscovering Christmas Bible Challenge, I read chapter 9 today and have found some interesting verses in Luke that I wanted to share. Luke 9:23 "Then He said to them all. 'If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'" This verse has to be speaking to me. It was in the Bible Challenge, in my daily devotion verse list, and in our Marriage Mentoring chapter for this week. My daily devotion and the Marriage Mentoring verse happened on the same day! I am thinking major God moment here! What is Christ trying to tell me? I need to do away with a worldy view of God and begin a more Biblical view. Do I really know how to die to self? I think this is the hardest part of being a Christian. We must learn his Word to fully live a Christian life. Rid ourselves of selfishness. Embrace our new identity that we have been unconditionally accepted into the family of God. Neither performance nor out of deservance have we become into the family of God. The only reason is because Jesus Christ died for you, for me. 2 Corinthians 5:21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. What does the person who has really given up self and taken up the cross look like? Does someone who has these qualities come to mind when you think of dying to self. I mean, we have been taught since birth to look out for ouselves because no one else will. We have been taught self esteem, self worth, it's all about "me" attitude's. When reality is through Christ we will have those things. We must be more concerned with our heavenly life than our worldy life. 
John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. What a concept, we can do nothing without Christ. Then what about me? Don't I matter? Of course you do, but you can only have life with Christ because without him, you are nothing. Something to ponder this Holiday Season, what do we want to look like to others in the New Year and throughout the hustle and bustle of shopping, parties, etc. Is that what God wants us to remember about this season, forgetting to give thanks to the one who took our sins and have washed ours clean? Or would we rather take a worldy view? Don't get me wrong, I will buy my babies gifts and join in on the singing, praise, and decorations but it all has to be with the intention of serving Christ and knowing what he is our redeemer. The way, the truth, and the life.
That post ended up longer than expected so I will leave you with a few quotes I found that I thought were worth sharing. Oh and BTW, the tree got decorated with much help from my sweet Ava, who will be 5 in January. My husband who has gone above and beyond to make this holiday as good as it can be. From decorations to the cards. I did design them but him and Ava really did the rest. She is such a great helper! And decorating the tree got me a little more into the Spirit and reminded me what this season really is about. Not about me, but about Him. Sure it will be hard and difficult but I can do it through Jesus Christ who gives me my daily strength.
Christmas is a necessity. There has to be at least one day of the year to remind us that we're here for something else besides ourselves. ~Eric Sevareid

It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air. ~W.T. Ellis

Instead of being a time of unusual behavior, Christmas is perhaps the only time in the year when people can obey their natural impulses and express their true sentiments without feeling self-conscious and, perhaps, foolish. Christmas, in short, is about the only chance a man has to be himself. ~Francis C. Farley

Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts. ~Janice Maeditere

When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things - not the great occasions - give off the greatest glow of happiness. ~Bob Hope

The List turned out longer than I thought. Oops another long post but I will leave you with just one that I hope you all instill and blessed beyond measure.

May the spirit of Christmas bring you peace,
The gladness of Christmas give you hope,
The warmth of Christmas grant you love.
~Author Unknown

I have also been doing really good with the Elf on the Shelf. Usually I forget to move him, but I know it's just been a few weeks but hope to keep it up!
And a side note, I was looking for a Christmas picture to post and it took pages to find one that revolved around Christ instead of Santa, Frosty, the Christmas tree or presents. I have finally found one though. Enjoy! For Christmas is a beautiful thing.

And December 12th is the Worldwide Compassionate Friends Candle Lighting http://www.compassionatefriends.org/, so light a candle in remembrance of a child who has died. Whether young or old, they are always someone's child. I have a candle in every window, not only for my brother, but for all those who we must remember. So, I know that candles in the windows are a little outdated but can't we choose one act of service and remember all who have been sent to their heavenly homes. I hope you do the same as well. Really, the candles have come a long way and actually look pretty cool!
Grab a candle 7pm Sunday and say a prayer for the families who have lost a loved one or for yourself if you have been faced with the difficult situation of the loss of your loved one.
And I didn't proof read this so there are probably mistakes but it is late and I am tired, I go back to work tomorrow! YAY me......

Go over to Ginger and Charlotte's blog Spiritual Sundays to link up and read some amazing and inspirational blogs!

With Love,

December 5, 2010

Making new peeps

Sippy Cups and Cloth Bums