Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Beautiful Roses, Beautiful Girl

Couldn't resist adding this snapshot. Bryn loves roses, especially pink. I saw these at Costco and got them for her birthday party. I love this girl!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

That's Practically All I Have To Say

Last week-end, Blake (my 10-year old) was invited to speak at a KIDZ rally. The theme was Jesus, The Light of The World. This rally featured young children singing, doing dramatic sign language, instruments solos, and speaking. Blake was one of two speakers and I thought it was cute enough to share. We all got a huge kick out of his last line.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Happy Birthday, Bryn-Anika!

Today, my princess is a big SIX years old. She has been so much joy to our home. Constant dancing, singing, and talking to her imaginary friends keeps me entertained. Some of the conversations are too cute. Her spirit is sweet and gentle. Time has flown so fast! She is now in first grade, at the top of her class, sang her first solo with Kidz Choir last Saturday night, and so beautiful she takes my breath away. I still have a difficult time trying to understand how Brian and I created such beautiful children.

To Bryn- Anika......

Happy Birthday, my doll! I love you more than chocolate!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Hearers or Doers

King James Version - But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
New International Version - Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.

Have you ever heard a parent say something such as, "Don't just stand there. Get busy." I wonder if God ever looks at people sitting in the house of "worship" and wants to say, "Hey, don't just sit there. If you came to the house of worship then worship me!" Next time you are in a church service, consider if you are just listening or if you are acting. I'll let you in on a secret - it is so fun to be a doer.

P.S. As soon as my husband can figure out how to get YouTube to upload some video clips, I will post the WAY Quartet singing and Blake speaking at a recent Kidz Rally. Blake was too cute! And, Bryn sang her first solo with Kidz Choir. Maybe he can get that one to upload, too.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Small Moments, Great Moments

Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones.- Phillips Brooks

Just maybe someday, if I always grant attention in the small, minute, day-to-day activities, I will develop a good character and it will blossom into a really great moment. Regardless of whether I have a "great" moment, the important thing is to make right choices and have good character in every detail of my life. I'm working on it.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Life Is Fragile

Recently, my dear friend went into premature labor from complications brought about by Preeclampsia. It was a very traumatic experience with mom and baby boy nearly dying. I paced the floor for days consumed with worry because my friend was far away on the east coast and I could not get there. God answered the many prayers and mom and baby are now home and doing well. The picture is of him while in hospital.
Last week I received news that another friend who went to high school with Bryce, delivered her baby nearly three months early. The two pound baby seemed to be progressing quite well until yesterday when it developed a severe bleed in the brain. It breaks my heart to see infants hooked to so many wires and machines because I know that the parents are not being allowed to hold their baby close and their minds are troubled. Thankfully, the baby will not remember this stressful time. We know that babies are resilient little fighters for life, yet life is so fragile. Will you join me in prayer for this new mom and dad and their tiny daughter?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

To Infinity and Beyond

Okay, I hate to see a sad baby, but something about this face cracked me up. After reading the quote, I really had a good chuckle. What an oxymoron to have a picture of a baby complaining about a length of time! Of course, the picture then got my brain to spinning. I got to thinking how we get so impatient with ourselves trying to achieve certain goals, but in the scheme of the "big picture" we have only been working a "few seconds" on our life. I wonder if God laughs at us when we are so silly? We need to reach for things that are beyond making ourselves successful, but rather strive to leave something of a greater value. All the things I personally achieve come to ought upon my death unless I have done things to help those tagging along behind me. Maybe I won't be so impatient with how long it is taking me to become. Of most importance, is the direction I am leading my soul. I think I will just work on things that I know will last beyond me. To infinity and beyond.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Is Failure An Opportunity?

Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.- Henry Ford

Ten to 15 years ago, my husband preached a message at our district youth camp titled, "Your Failures Are Not Fatal." It was a tremendous message in which he shared some of his failures as a young person while living in France and how he got drawn into the "wrong" crowd. This sermon was presented in an era where it was not popular for ministers to admit to any failures and it was quite a vulnerable thing for my husband to do, but the results were surprisingly positive. Even after all these years, he has young people approach him and tell how that message changed their life. Then yesterday, we had Larry Carter in service with us and he told a story of a minister who told him, "Larry, God doesn't remember the last time you fell, He only remembers the last time you got up." Too many times people believe a failure in their life is the end and turn to a life of distruction, but in reality failures are an opportunity. The next time you are disappointed with yourself, just tackle the task again. You will find the negative experience will have taught you and the entire scenario can make a positive change. In fact, the whole thing will probably end up better than you ever imagined.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


Thank you to all my blogger friends for helping make my blog a success. The counter has now exceeded 20,000 hits in less than 10 months. It has been fun and I look forward to many more conversations with you.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

My Shout Out to Apostolic Tabernacle of Merced

Sunday before last (Oct. 7), I was invited, along with several other guests which included the WAY Quartet and Nancy Grandquist, to sing at Apostolic Tabernacle in Merced, California for their "Sunday Singsation." This is a "happenin'" church and the congregation is quite culturally diverse. I couldn't help but think how wonderful the world would be if all churches, communities, cities, states, and governments, would embrace one another with such love and respect as the church family in Merced. If anyone would like an example of a place free of racism and prejudice, Apostolic Tabernacle is the place to look. Please take time to visit their website http://www.upcmerced.org/ and view some of their video clips. I might add, their choir sings the "Star Spangled Banner" better than any other performers I have heard. (On the home page of their website, there is an ad for video clips of Praise On The Mountain. Click there to view their performance of the "Star Spangled Banner.")

Before Sam Emory became the pastor of the church in Merced, he was a frequent guest speaker at our church. One of our fun memories was on a New Year's celebration when Blake was less than a year old and we were doing our traditional thing by going out to eat at 1 a.m. Blake was so mesmerized with Bro. Emory that he fought sleep to be able to watch Bro. Emory. Little Blake's eyes would shut, his head would roll sideways, and then he would suddenly jerk up and look straight at Bro. Emory. Blake is now ten years old, and Sam Emory is one of his heroes. Our family is greatly honored to count Sam and Shirley Emory as some of our dearest friends. We love them and we love the church they are now pastoring.

P.S. The genius behind their music is Mark Yandris, a highly sought after musician and director.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Have Faith With Me

My dear friends - I am inviting you to expand your faith and join me in prayer for my very dear friend, Jolene. She has been diagnosed with a benign brain tumor. Please visit her blog and leave her an encouraging word. She has posted some thoughts about living with a brain tumor. Actually, I think you will be encouraged by reading many of her thoughts. Her blog is at www.jolenejmendoza.blogspot.com

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Just Ordinary People

The virtues which keep this world sweet and the faithfulness which keeps it steadfast are chiefly those of the average man.- -- W. Russell Bowie

How often do people suffer low self worth thinking only people above them can make a difference in the world or attain important positions in life? This quote truly brings to perspective that it is the common man/woman who makes up the character of the world we live in. There is a minority of "bad apples" that receive so much media attention we sometimes think our entire world is terrible when, in fact, the majority is ordinary people just like you and me who put the sugar in our communities. There is a song written by Danniebelle Hall that I would love to share with you the lyrics.

Just ordinary people, God uses ordinary people,
He chooses people just like me and you,
Who are willing to do as He commands,
God uses people that will give Him all,
No matter how small your all may seem to you,
Because little becomes much as you place it in the Master's hand

Just like that little lad Who gave Jesus all he had,
How the multitude was fed with the fish and the loaves of bread,
What you have may not seem much,
But when you yield it to the touch,
Of the Master's loving hand, yes,
Then you'll understand how your life could never be the same

Just ordinary people,
My God uses plain, old, ordinary people,
He chooses people just like me and you,
Who are willing to do everything that He commands,
God uses people that will give Him all,
It doesn't matter,
It doesn't matter how small your all may seem to you,
Because little becomes much ,
As you place it in the Master's hand.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Satan, You're A Liar

If there is one thing upon this earth that mankind love and admire better than another, it is a brave man, -- it is the man who dares to look the devil in the face and tell him he is a devil.- -- James A. Garfield

When I read this quote, I immediately had a smile as I envisioned people yelling at the devil. Several years ago I came across a song that I have sung to the devil. The chorus goes like this, "Satan, you're a liar. You should know by now I know, you're a liar. There's one thing you can't deny, you're the father of every lie. You're a liar." My favorite verse is, "I know you're everything in this world except my friend. Still you have the courage, the nerve to come around again, you tell me I'm not born again, heaven's not a reality, that Jesus Christ is not the son of God, Satan, listen good to me.......you're a liar!" Don't be afraid to speak to the devil. Let him know he is a devil and not welcome to spread his smack talk to you. The only thing the devil and I agree on is this - I hate the devil and he hates me.

P.S. Now this made me think of the country song, "I Hate Her." Did I mention, I hate the devil?