Tuesday, July 29, 2008

This is Inspiring

Wow. This is an inspiring video.
Here is some background behind it. Read it before you watch it:

A son asked his father, 'Dad, will you take part in a marathon with me?' The father who, despite having a heart condition, says 'Yes'. They went on to complete the marathon together. Father and son went on to join other marathons, the father always saying 'Yes' to his son's request of going through the race together. One day, the son asked his father, 'Dad, let's join the Ironman together.' To which, his father said 'Yes' too. For those who don't know, the Ironman is the toughest triathlon ever. The race encompasses three endurance events of a 2.4 mile (3.86kilometer) ocean swim, followed by a 112 mile (180.2 kilometer) bike ride, and ending with a 26.2 mile (42.195 kilometer) marathon along the coast of the Big Island. Father and son went on to complete the race together. Please note the ending scripture and believe.


Some thoughts of my own:
  • What a picture of a father's love for his son! Unbelievable love. His father carries him through thick and thin. His father never gives up. His father endures. And our Heavenly Father does the same for us.
  • What a picture of the road of parenting. Our children are 'in our hands'. We have to carry them through it. It is long, hard and difficult at times. Sometimes it seems never ending. It is sacrificial. We can't do it in our own strength...but we can do it through Christ's strength. If we will endure and rely on Christ, the reward at the end is worth every bit of sweat and grit.
  • For me personally, at this moment in life, it is a picture of choosing to homeschool. It, too, is a long hard road. Daily, I have to surrender it to the Lord, remembering He has called us to this task and He, alone, can accomplish it. It takes sweat, grit, perseverance and focus. It takes believing God that He is with us every step of the way. It takes faith and it takes surrender.
  • This video reminds me that if God can enable a man to complete an Ironman, all the way carrying his son, than He will surely be with me every step of the way in a marathon! I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME!

So, what things are you having to trust God with right now in your life? How did this video inspire you?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Random Questions

1. What time did you get up this morning? 6:20 on the nose
2. Diamonds or Pearls? Diamonds
3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? Wall-E
4. What is your favorite TV show? The Office
5. What did you eat for breakfast? A gallon of coffee and a waffle
6. What foods do you dislike? Hardly anything! I guess I do not like peas straight up. And don't put mayonnaise or mustard on my sandwich
7. Your favorite potato chip? kettle
8. What is your favorite CD at the moment? My Vintage Country CD
9. What kind of car do you drive? a 12 passenger white cargo van (stop laughing!)
10. Favorite sandwich? Derby City Chicken Salad from Kroger
11. What characteristics do you despise? Bragging and loud showoffs; trying to overly impress; fakeness
12. What are your favorite clothes? cute t's and flippies; sundresses are fun
13. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? This is too hard to narrow down! Where would I not want to go? Maybe the French Riviera? If I had to choose somewhere I've not been it might be San Francisco, skiing in Colorado, Australia...then there's of course, Hawaii, Alaska, Seattle, Washington....the list could go on.
14. What color is your bathroom? Puke green
15. Favorite brand of clothing? Old Navy and Gap
16. Favorite time of day? early morning with the coffee brewing
17. Where would you want to retire to? Somewhere by the ocean but that has seasons.
18. Favorite sports to watch? Baseball and football
19. Coke or Pepsi? Coke hands down
20. Are you a morning person or night owl? Lately I've been a night owl but I prefer mornings.
21. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share? nope
22. What did you want to be when you were little? A truck driver
23. What is your best childhood memory? Playing in our pool with family and friends, 70's music playing in the background, catching lightning bugs and the annual backyard firework show. It was NOT eating dinner outside every night in the summer with all the flies
24. Nicknames? T-bone (thanks craig!!!) :)
25. Piercings? Ears
26. Eye Color? Green
27. Favorite day of the week? Saturday
28. Favorite restaurant? Panera Bread and PF Changs
29. Favorite ice cream? Not a big ice cream fan--how about a Moo Latte from the DQ
30. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? any bookstore
31. Bedtime? lately 12 or later
32. What are you listening to right now? Owen jibber jabber
33. How many tattoos do you have? None
34. Next film you'll see? Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (now that we've been to Savannah we've got to see it)
35. Tag anyone? Anyone Reading this blog

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Savannah Makes Me Smile

Wow--four posts in one day? This is a record (can you tell Eric is out of town or what!)!

Just wanted to say that I went on a trip with my sweet husband last weekend and had the most refreshing fun time! We went to Savannah, Georgia. Why Savannah? Well, because I have always wanted to go there...I love historical places and this place is full of interesting history. And the southern architecture set among huge oak trees with Spanish moss spilling from them, picturesque 'squares' every couple of blocks--lush, green and shady--in my book it is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. And it is a very quaint, romantic weekend getaway. And there is a beach nearby. And Savannah is one of my most favorite girl names. And (Eric's personal favorite) we got to cash in travel and hotel points and go for free. And it is also the most haunted city in the country. (okay, I know this is weird, but I secretly find the haunted thing interesting and just had to check it out in person).

We had not gotten away by ourselves since before Owen was born--it was long overdue and extra sweet because it was so needed!

Besides riding the trolley all around town for the historical tour, going on the Ghosts and Gravestone night tour, going to the beach, shopping on the riverfront, going to Paula Deen's restaurant and store, sleeping in, and reading lots of good books, one of the many ways we spent our time:

Eric and I wrote down goals and dreams we have for our future. (Yes, I know you are now rolling your eyes and yes, Eric rolled his eyes too when I suggested this grandiose idea, but hey--ain't nobody going to be rolling there eyes when these things get accomplished, simply because we put pen to the paper!)

Some of the things on our list were:

  • selling everything and moving to Africa
  • moving to a small town and living on a farm and owning a really big truck

Okay, so now you are laughing your heads off--about the farm--but I really in all serious would love, love, love this and you know, I did just grow my first zucchini in my backyard.

And, well, I am not going to tell you the rest of the things on our list because I kind of like the element of surprise. And anyway, I am tired of talking.

So, it's your turn. What kinds of things do you and your spouse dream about?

Aching and Breaking

Hey crazy marathoners,
How come you never mentioned the fact that during training your body aches 24/7 nonstop, like you have a bad case of arthritis that's never going away? I am only on week four and I feel like a train wreck. One of you crazies could have warned me!

It's Official

I guess you're officially a mother of four boys when you are up at 1:30 AM watching the fifteenth inning of the All Star game with your oldest son. So sorry you couldn't pull it out National League--I was rooting for you. And what's wrong with you people in New York? Booing the Red Sox players even when they are playing on your American team? What in the world? What kind of example are you trying to set for our future generation, anyway?

(Wow--this is fun talking about sports...I can't believe I carried on that whole conversation with myself.)


Recently, some close friends asked Eric and I (along with some others) to fast with them in regards to a significant desire they are pursuing the Lord about. The idea being that we would choose something in our lives to give up (fast from) for a period of time--something that would be a sacrifice to give up and anytime we craved the particular thing we would be reminded to instead pray for our friends' request. My husband chose sweets and I chose sweets and reading blogs. I honestly have not fasted very often and doing so raised my awareness about a lot of things in my life. It got me thinking about how there are so many things in my life that I rely on to 'fill me up'. Spending time with my family and friends, sweets, reading books, reading blogs, running, drinking coffee. Even 'spiritual activity' can be a filler. Or how about our 'positions' we hold, either in the workplace or at church? Are we striving for accolades or recognition from others in order to be 'filled'? It got me wondering about how many times I rely on drinking coffee to keep me going throughout the day. Ouch--if God asked me to give up coffee could I do it? Could I give it up, in faith knowing that His Holy Spirit is the ultimate energizer? Or--how often do I rely on my husband, my children or my friends to meet needs in me that ultimately only God can meet? Of course, God gave us relationships (and many other things for that matter) to be blessings in our lives but when these things become more to us than God himself they become idols.

When Jesus was asked in the New Testament which commandment was most important He replied, "...Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength." (NIV, Mark 12:30). Really, you can trace every single sin back to this one commandment. For every sin we commit has to do with something in our lives that we are putting before our Lord. As I have been praying over this scripture, asking the Lord to help me truly do this, the Lord is opening my eyes to areas where my heart is divided. Areas I have not fully surrendered to Him. One area is my children. I am so concerned about doing everything 'right' as a parent that I don't always just rely on the Holy Spirit's leading in this area. Sometimes I am too reliant on parenting resources instead of on Him and Him alone. Period. The same with homeschooling. I get so caught up in whether I am doing it 'well enough' instead of trusting in Him to guide me and lead me--instead of having faith in the fact that He has called me to this task and He can accomplish it through me. Him and Him alone. Period. My idol in my life is 'wanting to be successful' at these things and then I become an overachiever, falling into 'works' to accomplish it. The Lord says that 'We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us' Phil 4:13. The kicker is filtering everything we do 'through Christ' --that means if we are doing it through Christ then we will be given the strength to accomplish it. If God hasn't called us to the thing then we can be assured he won't give us the strength to accomplish it. These are just a few of the idols He has been showing me. I know there is so much more...I am barely scratching the surface here...how about my comforts of electricity, a nicely furnished home, air conditioning, coffee, eating out....UUGH!

Oh, Lord, I just ask one thing--please, please, please don't make me give up coffee! :)

As we surrender these areas in faith, it is an open invitation to experience Him more fully and intimately. So, to the one or two people who might read this :) , what 'idols' has He been opening your eyes to lately?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Another 'Wes-ism'

Our six year old, Wes (who is our #3 child, so he is right smack dab in the middle!), is our most observant child and is what we like to call 'our thinker'. His wheels are always turning as he watches the things around him. He is also very 'out of the box'. Couple this with a dry sense of humor and you get some of the funniest off the cuff comments and discussions out of him. The other day he was helping me fold clothes. As he was folding underwear he said:

"You know, when I was little, you know like three or four, when we were coming out of church I would look at everybody walking out and I would think that they had the same kind of underwear on as me. And then I would think that would be really wierd if everybody was walking out of church with just their underwear on...But now that I'm older I know that there are lots of different kinds of underwear...and daddys underwear looks a lot different than my underwear..."

So there you have it. Another 'Wes-ism'.

The next time you are walking by a child at church--BEWARE--they just might be thinking about your underwear! :)