Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A Christmas Return

"Excuse me."

"Yes, how can I help you?"

"I'd like to return this Christmas present if I could, please."

"May I ask why?"

"Well, it must be broken. It certainly didn't work how I expected it to."

"I see. Could you be a bit more specific, just for the record? What exactly is wrong with this Christmas present?"

Well, first of all it isn't like any of the others..".

"You expected it to be like the others?"

"Well, maybe not exactly, but at least similar to what's on the package. I'd say it's false advertising at best."

"You mean the promise of joy, peace on earth, love, happiness..".

"Yeah, that mumbo jumbo."

"Ah I see. Let me ask you a few questions. Did you read the instructions before you tried to use this Christmas present?"

"Sure, I've read them a bunch of times. But they get a bit confusing sometimes. It seems like I'm missing a page or that there are two separate sets of directions, and I don't know, maybe my present is missing some pieces."

"Two separate sets of directions? That must be the problem. May I see them? Maybe we can fix this Christmas present for you yet."

"Ah, here's the problem. You've been following the wrong set of directions. That's why this Christmas present hasn't been working as well as your Christmas presents in the past. And you are right, you are missing some pieces."

"This first set of directions says that your present should be filled with unbroken traditions, no change, lots of gifts, no problems, tolerance in all things, and happy happy people all around you (even if they're not)."

"Yep, that sound like the directions we are trying to follow."

"But there is another set here."

"What's it say? "

"Just two words actually."

          "Remember me."

Ah, Jesus I'm so sorrry. I wasted a perfectly good Christmas present trying to make it like Christmas in the past. Things change. but you are always the same, yesterday, today and forever.

I love you.

And Happy Birthday.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Meet Me on Monday

I'm participating in a Meet Me on Monday bloghop. After you read mine, please head over to where it all started and get to know some new people! Here are the questions that were posted for everyone to answer.


1. How do you order your steak?

Medium well with just a teeny tiny touch of pink... I have to say though, it doesn't usually come back that way. It's either almost raw or cooked to leather. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated. :)

2. Are you superstitious about anything?
Not really. Although, I have seen a correlation in my life of when I comment out loud that something is going really surprisingly well, it often takes a nosedive in the next few minutes. coincidence, you say? Maybe.

3. Who is your best friend (not including your spouse)?

Jesus, of course.  From Pennsylvania, Angie... We've known each other since we were 10 months old. Our lives are vastly different, but there is a tie there that will never be broken. Can't explain it beyond that!

North Carolina- My friend Kathy hits the top of a fairly long list. I am so blessed with my NC friends.
I was loving Kathy even before I met her because she was to replace me in a temporay job that I had, that I had no business having! When I had kids she became their second mom. (My youngest said she was her "stepmom" once!) When I was down, she'd commisserate, then pick me up. Her stories make me laugh. Time spent with her is a refreshing time, a time of acceptance no matter what.

Georgia - Many possibilites... don't know yet. I think you have to live here for about 5 years before you can have one of those.

4. When is the last time your wore a dress (for the guys...a suit)?

Wow. I have no idea. I sort of remember wearing one at somebody's wedding in NC. Heels hurt my back, so usually it's black pants and flats...

5. Do you have any trips scheduled?
Going to NC and Pa real soon! Will probably go on another missions trip in the spring or summer with my hubby, somewhere in South America.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

hmmm Christmas....

I've been thinking that I should write some sort of Christmas blog. The problem is that depending on the day (or sometimes the hour) I haven't decided how I feel about Christmas this year.

What? you say. How can you, a children's pastor, feel anything but joy and excitement about Christmas?

Well, first of all my Christmas tree has too many white ornaments on it. I know that seems like a very superficial reason to not be excited about Christmas, but really, my tree used to be filled with blue and red ornaments and lots of "Hallmarky" types too... It just doesn't seem like my tree. We must be missing a box of Christmas decorations... And that's the other thing. I've put up nine nativity sets and five stockings are hanging in the hall, but the house somehow seems Underdecorated this year. I'm missing something.

We aren't invited to any parties, we're not having any parties, we haven't connected here quite like I have wanted to. I'm not quite complaining because other years (read- when we lived in Greensboro) we were probably too busy. Some down time is good.

My Mom is in heaven, my Dad is in a hospital rehab center. My brother got a divorce this year (the first in our family); Christmas day is just going to be downright strange.

So that's the "Not So Happy Hour".  Anybody else here this year?

Then there is the "I'm so blessed I can hardly stand it" hour.  My children are awesome. And other then a few sore throats, we are all healthy. We all love Jesus and want him to guide our lives. We live in a wonderful house with a livingroom big enough to spin in. We've managed to buy some Christmas presents even in this economy. We are going to be able to travel to see family this year. We've had a great year of ministry,  training Teen challenge staff all over the world.
What can get better than this?

So there it is. How I feel this Christmas. A lot like that very first Christmas, I think. What again???

Well, I can't imagine that Mary was very happy to be heading to Bethlehem being nine months pregnant, you know? And then when they got there, to be told that there was no room in the inn? I would be fit to be tied! I am sure that she was pretty tired and grumpy by the time they got settled in the hay. And I"m guessing that she had probably been having labor pains all day! Man, what a Christmas!

But all of that frustration changed for Mary as soon as that little baby was born .  When she saw that sweet little face and those teeny tiny God hands everything negative and hard was forgotten... for a time.  Yes, He changed everything for Mary.... and for the rest of us...  for all time.

We'll have our moments of yuck occasionally, I'm sure. But because Jesus came on that very first Christmas, we can have more than a just a "Happy Hour". We can have a "Happily ever after." And that's what Christmas is all about, nt my silly old Christmas tree.

Merry Christmas!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

"What's Good for the Goose is Good for the Gander" (Or ) "Message to my Potential Daughters in Law"

Dear future potential daughter in law

Since I  wrote the official "husband wannabe" letter the other day, I think it's only fair that I pen one for those that potentially will be my daughter in law. The problem is (and yes I feel very guilty writing this) I've thought a lot more about what I am looking for in a husband for my daughters than I have for my son's wife. 
Why is that, you ask?
I've been spending my time trying to make sure he is a good husband for you!

After thinking on it for a few days, here's "the list" that I've come up with...

The  no brainers:
Love Jesus more than you love anyone or anything else. Put him first always. Be involved in ministry. Share what God is doing in your life. Be brave and wise with your words. Secondly, know that in this family, marriage is forever. You do whatever it takes to make it work.

Here's what we'll be watching for:

Be fun!
Prepare to be a missionary's wife.
Love children.
Be an encourager.
Enjoy life!
Have a gentle spirit.
Be a lover of all kinds of music.
Be fun!
Listen. Think before you give advice.
Liking NCIS is probably non negotiable.
Don't nag or nitpick.
Be a reader.
play games, but don't play games with his heart. Or I'll play games with your head.

Know that if you win his heart, you will have it forever. And don't ever take it for granted.
Be fun!
Know Gibbs rules. (Okay, not really. but it probably would impress him!)
You should probably learn spanish.
Be forgiving, easygoing, and a little bit organized.
And last but not least, have fun!

We will love to have you as part of our family. I can already hear you giggling in the next room when he says something funny. I can see you smile at him that special couple smile when you think I'm not looking. I'll try not to give too much advice (unless you ask of course) but you will need to know that I plan on spoiling my grandbabies (especially the blue eyed ones!)

I'm so looking forward to meeting you in about 8 years or so. Until then, study your Bible, practice the fruits of the spirit, be wise with your relationships, and learn those Gibbs rules! :)


Sunday, December 5, 2010

To the Husband Wannabees

To the future suitors (read... potential husbands) of my daughter,

I've told my daughter since she was five years old, that the decision of who she marries is the second most important decision of her life, and that we would be assisting her with it. I think she's good with that.

On that note, I feel it only fair that I give you a heads up about what we are expecting from you.

You're very welcome.

 Here are the no brainers. First of all, you need to love Jesus with all of your heart and it needs to be apparent to everyone that you do. Are you talking about what He's doing in your life? Do you study your Bible? Do you attend church? Are you involved in any form of ministry? These are the questions we will be asking.

Secondly, if you have dated longer than six months, you need to treat her like she is the second most important relationship in your life. Now, that doesn't mean you leave all of your friends in the dust, because you need them too. As a matter of fact, if you don't have any friends except her, forget it. She's not the one for you. She's going to need to foster her other friendships too.

You need to be able to make her laugh. And you need to love her sense of humor.

Blue eyes is a plus, because I'd love some blue eyed grandchildren. But if you don't have blue eyes, no real problem, I have two other children. Maybe they'll find a blue eyed spouse.

You need to be a good communicator. You need to share your dreams.

You need to have a passion and a dream that will coincide with hers.

You need to be secure in who you are so you can help her to shine.

Being financially secure is a plus.

You might want to learn to cook.

You need to have a great relationship with your mother. I've told her to watch carefully how you treat your mom. That will say more about you than a fully loaded resume'.

You need to be willing to spend time with her family. You don't need to adore us, but it would be good to at least like us a little bit.

You need to love kids, reading, and Disney movies. (Okay, you don't need to love Disney movies, but tolerating them would probably be a plus.)

You better be at least a little bit romantic.

Keep your promises. Always.

Wooing her is great- but if wooing turns to manipulating, I will find you and manipulate your face.

Some sort of manners is expected, correct grammar would be awesome: No swearing, yelling, or putting someone down...

Not too much to expect if you are trying to win a princess, eh?

Here's what we'll do:

We'll meet your family. Love on them. Make them feel at home.
We will come visit your church and yes, you better go regularly- If the pastor doesn't recognize your name, it won't be recognized in this house either.
If you are "the one", we will love on you like you were our own son. You'll be teased, honored, invited on vacations, smacked with snowballs, and asked advice, all of what helps make us a family. You'll even get an ornament with your name on it to put on our Christmas tree!

And the most important thing: We'll give you our precious, amazing, filled to the brim with potential, wonderful daughter to be your one and only forever and forever.

It will be great to meet you... some 8 years from now would be good.  Until then, grow in Jesus, practice the 12 fruits of the spirit, treat your parents well, get a good education, go on a missions trip or two.  And know that we'll be praying for you.


Your future mother-in-law
(We'll figure out what you can call me later.) :)


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

November Novel Writing is finished!

In case anyone was wondering where I've been for the last month, I thought I'd blog a short explanation. I've been exploring the possibility of time travel! Yep, found a manual and read through the rules and suggestions for a good and safe trip, and it sounds exhilarating. Where did I find this manual, you ask? It was inside my brain all along. Couldn't believe it when it showed up in my novel.

Okay, Here's the deal. I signed up to write a 50,000 word novel during the 30 days of November. I started out the first two days or so writing a story about a woman who was newly separated from her husband and trying to figure out what went wrong.  After two days, I decided that this character and story was WAY too depressing to hang around with all month, so I started over.

What was interesting with this new story is I just started writing and the ideas never stopped! I'm still not finished with it yet, but I think I know the ending and I think within a few months I might actually have something that I will be brave enough to share with all (7) of you! :)

Write on!


Saturday, October 23, 2010

It's All "Relative"

     I am related to John and Priscilla Alden. For those of you that aren't history buffs, these two came over on  the Mayflower in 1620 and landed in Plymouth, Massachusetts. They didn't come as a married couple however.
     Priscilla came over with her parents (the Mullens) and younger brother, Joseph.  Mr. Mullins (I think his name was William) made shoes and had actually brought  more than 30 pair along with him on the Mayflower so that he could trade them for other necessities. I don't think he actually had the chance to trade too many of them. 
     That first winter was  hard. Almost half of the group died during those first few months. William, his wife Alice, and their son were part of that group. Priscilla was the only Mullins to survive.
      A couple of years later, Priscilla married John. They had a lot of kids, the second one being Priscilla's namesake and my ancestrial line.

     I am related to John and Priscilla Alden. John was hired onto the Mayflower as the Cooper, one who repaired things on the way over to the New World. He was probably related to the captain. He fell in love with Priscilla, but there was a problem. Another man fell in love with her also, a certain Miles Standish.
     Two years later, the better man won and John and Priscilla wed. Both John and Priscilla lived a very long time, John being one of the last of the Mayflower clan to die.

     I am related to John and Priscilla Alden. Imagine what would have happened if Priscilla had married Miles instead? Would I still live in New England? Would I have artistic talent? Would I have red hair?

I am related to John and Priscilla Alden. Imagine my life if Priscilla had died along with the rest of her family that first winter....


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Max: An Ordinary name for an Extraordinary Dog

Maybe everyone thinks their dog is extraordinary. (Except my friend, Keri, who keeps trying to give me hers!) A blog I read this morning put me in mind to tell you about our Max.

His name at the time of our meeting was "Bouncer". On the fateful day of our meeting, I had stopped at the pound, as I regularly did, just to have a look at the  adorable little pups. When I walked in the door, I saw a sign that requested that foster families take dogs home for the week so that the kennel floors could be redone.

Our wonderful boxer, Chauncey, had died just the month before, so we were dogless for the first time in 10 years. I figured that it was a good time to help out the cause.

I walked around the entire dog area looking for something that looked "boxer-ish". I saw this adorable big headed black and white dog with tiny ears looking up with these big brown doe eyes. He kind of looked like a boxer, but I wanted to make sure there wasn't some purebred brindle just around the corner, so I sped around the whole place scanning the cages.

Seeing nothing else that peaked my interest, I returned to Bouncer. He was so happy to see me back in front of his cage. He wiggled and wiggled and leaned against the front of the cage, just so I could pet him. This was my dog, I was sure of it. Reading the paperwork, I found out that he was actually part Sharpei (Little ears and wrinkles!) and who knew what else. I loved him.  So I did the paperwork and we were on our way.... only for a week, of course.

When I got home, my husband was in the driveway working on the car. As I got out of our car, with a dog following on a leash, my husband looked up and said something to the effect of "What did you do?!"
I quickly responded with "It's only for a week!"  He just sort of shook his head and went back to work.

Earlier that day,  he and some friends had installed new carpeting in our daughter's bedroom. The minute I released Bouncer from his leash, he went into her room and pooped on the BRAND NEW carpet.  This was the beginning of our "Bouncer woes".
Bouncer was not housebroken. Bouncer ran away every time the door was open. Bouncer barked non stop. Bouncer chewed up everything that was left on the floor.

About a week after Bouncer came into our family, he was taken back to the pound. Our children cried. They loved that  mutt, but it didn't appear that he was the dog for us.

Fast forward two weeks. We had gone on vacation and returned home. A friend of mine had told me that there was a dog at the pound that was absolutely adorable and that I should go see him. and that his name was Bouncer. I told her we had already seen him and experienced him at our home.  Adorable yes, but not for us.

A few mornings later, my husband was getting ready to go to work. As he stepped outside, he  noticed that our shed door was open. He went over to shut it and as he glanced inside, he notice a MAN ASLEEP IN OUR SHED!  (It seems that he was so drunk that he couldn't find his way home, and decided to use a bicycle pedal for a pillow! How drunk do you have to be for that to be comfortable?!)

Anyway it was then and there, that I decided that we had to have a dog. I went back and got Bouncer, who unceremoniously became "Max". ( I would some day like to have an animal with a really unique name, but so far that hasn't happened- Presently we have Max, Bella, Janey, April, June, Nessie, and Mama cat- whose real name I think is Rosie.... but that's another story.)

Unfortunately, Giving the dog a new name did not give him new character. He still chewed, barked, ran away, and made messes in the house.

I will spare you the details of the next few months. Suffice to say that there were many times when the dog almost took a return trip to the pound. but then, God took pity on us and gave us a few "dog miracles".

Our friend, Heidi, who had two large dogs of her own, lent us a huge training kennel so that we could housetrain Max. The idea for the training is that when they are in the kennel, they won't go to the bathroom (cuz it messes up their "space"). Well, Max must not have known about this rule, because he just kept going to the bathroom in the kennel. The only positive aspective was that at least it was easier to clean the bottom of the kennel then it was the carpet! Finally, one day while I was cleaning the cage, I sprayed it with Lysol. From that moment on Max never went in the cage (or in the house!) again.  I keep thinking maybe I can make some money by advertising Lysol as a housetraining trick!

Getting rid of the running away habit was just as miraculous. I was complaining about how often Max ran away, to a friend of ours at church. Unbeknownst to me, this friend worked at one of those Invisible Fence places. (Where your dog wears a collar and if he goes over top of a buried wire, he gets shocked.)  He offered it to us for free if we would allow them to use Max and our family as a promo for their company. We said yes, and got a very expensive electric fence set for free! Now Max could be out in the yard without us and be safe (and we didn't have to spend hours chasing him anymore!)

The last unbearable characteristic of poor Max, was that he chewed up everything! All of the time! and he barked and he didn't listen very well, etc.

My hubby was speaking to an old friend about this dog that we had and how frustrating it all was. come to find out that this friend (and his wife) trained dogs! they offered to take Max for ten days (for free!) and train him for us, with the understanding that on the tenth day we would come and be trained ourselves. We agreed.  The difference in Max with only ten days of training was absolutley amazing!
He was obedient, quiet, and only used his mouth for eating his dog food! (And an occasional offical bark!)

All in all, we probably got about $1000.00 dollars worth of "help" for free that allowed Max to be part of our family. He has been with us for 9 years now and is an absolute gem. There really aren't words to explain what he has become to our family. I would not trade him for the world. Big dogs don't last forever  though, so I know that I probably only have a few more years left to enjoy him.

Unfortunately, we already have Max's replacement. Her name is Bella and in a moment of unclear thinking we accepted her into our family about 21/2 years ago. Bella is a coll- lab- oration (border collie, lab,and dalmation) mix.

Bella runs away every chance she gets. Bella barks and "talks" non stop. Bella  chews up everything that is left on the floor when she is left alone.

Here we  go again.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Parenting the Parent

This past week was the first time that I was really a parent to my parent.

I had to explain to my dad why he couldn't drive his car "right now" (He is much too weak from being in the hospital. His reaction time is slower than it should be. We want to keep him safe, etc.) I had to keep telling him what his room number is in his new "home" in the Assisted Living wing at Messiah Village. I had to catch him when he wobbled, coerce him out of bed in the morning, make sure he took his meds, and sit with him so he wouldn't be lonely.

I really didn't mind any of that. What I didn't like was that my strong opinionated dad often looked scared, uncertain, and a little distrusting of me. Six months ago, he had been trying to convince all of us that he should go into the assisted living program at Messiah. Now, he feels as if we are sending him there without his consent.

He did get feisty a few times, which I saw as a good sign. The nurse was  trying to schedule him for his "whirl pool time" (hey, I'll go there!) and he adamantly told her that he couldn't do 11:00 on Friday because every Friday at 11:30 he had lunch with his artist friends. How he thought he was going to get there without a car, I have no idea. But at least he had some spirit and was remembering things!

As I was walking him to the dining hall for his first dinner at the facilities, he turned to me and said, "You know, I'm pretty skeptical about this." I responded with "That's okay, your're allowed to be skeptical".

I know without a doubt that this is what he needs right now. And if all goes well and he regains his strength, he'll realize it eventually too. Just like all of those times when as a kid and I didn't understand why he made me do something I didn't want to do, or didn't let me do something I really wanted to do.

Maybe he'll even thank me for it one day.

Now I even sound like the parent....


Sunday, September 19, 2010


Okay, about Heaven... Why don't we want to go there?

A church aquaintance of mine went there on Friday. He was one of the only people I've ever met who didn't seem to be afraid of going. He was diagnosed just two months ago with cancer and though he appreciated the prayers that were said for him, you could tell that he was okay to go. It was like he realized that he was finally going to get that reward that had been promised to him so long ago when he asked Jesus to be Lord of his life.

I keep thinking about C.S. Lewis's book "The Great Divorce". In the book, heaven looks a lot like earth, only more solid, more real. The Bible says that our life here is just a dull, shadowy version of what it is like there. It also says there will be no more pain, sorrow, or tears once we cross that "great divide".

Johnny is one of the newest arrivals. My mom is there. Aunts and uncles, grandparents, and friends are all there. Jesus is there, waiting.

So about Heaven.... Why don't we want to go there?

Friday, September 10, 2010


In a perfect world, My husband would make me laugh more, our family would have more money, my hubby would come home to a clean house, my daughter would have a Mac pro, my son would get to drive a "cool" car instead of an old conversion van, and my youngest would get to meet Gary Levox of Rascal Flatts fame.

I'd be best friends with Dick Van Dyke and I would own a pingpong table. My husband would be training Teen Challenge staff all around the world, my son would have his pilot's license, my daughter would have a boyfriend with great moral values, and my youngest would be best friends with Rascal Flatts.

I would be able to use a star trek transporter to get to Maine, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and North Carolina in a milli-second. I would have the greatest (children's pastor) job in the whole world, Gregg would have a camper, my daughter would have a college scholarship, my son would not have TMJ, and my youngest would tour with Rascal Flatts.

Oh yeah, and all my friends and family would have an eternal relationship with Jesus...


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Thinking of her... and Him

It's not a holiday. It's not her birthday. It's not even the anniversary of the day she left this earth. There is no particular reason that she should be on the vestiges of my conscience all day long, and yet she is. Not in a "remember when" kind of way, but in a "I can't wait to share this moment with her" kind of way. And then I remember... my mom is with Jesus and has been for eight long earth years.

Can she see what's going on down here? Does she have front row seats to everything that's going on in her children's lives? Does she brag about us? (Is there bragging in heaven? Cuz if there is, she's bragging.)

The people that have heaven figured out would probably say that she is too busy worshiping Jesus to be paying attention to what's going on down here. I sort of have a different picture.

I see Mom and Jesus together, during their "one on one" time, discussing us. They are both excited, talking about their "children" and what is going on in their lives, and Jesus is encouraging her about how ultimately, the struggles they are dealing with right now will bring them closer to God. And of course, Mom believes. It doesn't take much faith to believe things when you're standing right next to Jesus. :)

Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief...


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

An Imaginary Conversation Between Moses and God (At least I think it was imaginary!)

Moses: God, you have given me the honor of writing down your words, so that they would be saved for all of posterity, and I really appreciate it, really I do...

God: I sense a "but" coming, Moses.

Moses: Well, I've written down everything that you have told me to write verbatim, word for word...

God: That's what verbatim means, Moses... Don't be redundant.

Moses: I've written things that I don't even understand myself... "Don't boil a baby goat in his mother's milk, Don't shave your forehead for the sake of the dead". I've written it all...

God: but?

Moses: I really can't write this down.

God: Why not?

Moses: It's just not right that's all. It just seems a bit hypocritical to me.

God: Now, Moses. Do you really think I would allow you to write something hypocritical in My Book?

Moses: Well, I guess not. It just seems sort of self-serving, you know?

God: You just let me worry about that. This verse will speak to lots of people over the centuries, trust Me. Besides, I have a really great reason for wanting that verse in the Bible.

Moses: You do? What is it, God?

God: It's going to make Linda Fischer smile one day.

Moses: Okay Lord, that's good enough for me. I'll write it ...... "Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth." Numbers 12:3

(Thousands of years later)

Linda: ha ha hahahahah Moses wrote that!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My letter to Hannah

Dearest Hannah,
Every time I read your story in the Bible, I get very emotional. From the second verse, you have me hooked; "And he had two wives; the name of one was Hannah, and the name of the other Peninnah. Peninnah had children, but Hannah had no children."

I know that your greatest desire was to have children. It didn't help that Peninnah (the other wife) was a real jerk and teased you unmercifully,and it didn't matter that your hubby was totally in love with you and didn't care about you being childless. You wanted, no, more than that, you needed a child. You would do just about anything to have a child. Hence, your promise to God.

So here's my question, Hannah. when God gave you that child, did you struggle with honoring that promise? While you were pregnant with Samuel, did you know that the promise meant giving him up at such an early age? When he was born and you saw those perfect little toes and that fuzzy haired head, did you just for a moment, want to renig on that promise?

And when the time came to leave him with the priest Eli at the temple, did you hesitate? Did seeing how his own sons had turned out make you want to turn around and run for home?
And yet you left him there. You trusted God.

I love the fact that the Bible says that you visited him each year, bringing him a new robe. Did you ever want to just grab him and take him back home again? I can imagine those reunions; tears and smiles and family stories, trying to keep him connected to the family... because there was a family now. God had blessed you with three more sons and two daughters! They were your reward because you trusted God.

And because you did, Samuel grew up to be judge, priest, and prophet for a whole generation and beyond. He was an amazing man, Hannah. I'm sure you were proud, but in my mind, you are an even more amazing woman. Thank you for sacrificing the "growing up" years of your son, so that the world could learn, even thousands of years later, what it means to serve God.


Saturday, July 31, 2010

I am a barterer. Whether or not this is a real word is immaterial. I am bartering. I started with a paper clip and though I wish that I could say that this was an original idea, it wasn't. I got it from Reader's Digest. A few years back they did an article on a man who bartered his way from a paperclip all the way to a new house!

The truth is I didn't even start out with a paper clip. I started with the promise of a paper clip. My friend Joyce Carter was just as excited by this idea of barterdom as I was and said that she would trade me a flashlight for the paper clip. The following Sunday, she showed up with the coolest flashlight I've ever seen! I had forgotten my paper clip at home (ADD moment) but she traded me anyway.

Now, I have the opportunity to trade my flashlight for a toaster and a free dinner. here's my dilemma: Can I eat the free dinner and still trade the toaster? Or do I need to keep the trades "intact"? I'm still so new at this...

Regardless, I still owe Joyce a paperclip...

If anyone would like to trade me something for a toaster (sans the dinner:)) Just let me know!


Friday, July 30, 2010

I am fascinated by the untold stories in the Bible. By "Untold" I mean not typically taught in most Sunday schools.

For example, there's the story of Ehud in the book of Judges.
Let me set the stage for you:

There's this king, a really fat king. He's the Jabba the Hut type of king with folds and folds of fat. And he is an evil king. (That's important for you to know because he dies in the end.).

Eglad, king of Moab was his name. He made the children of Israel pay tribute to him. The Israelites prayed for help in the situation. God heard their prayers and when it was payment time, sent Ehud (the hero of our story), along with some other soldiers to give the tribute to the king. But before Ehud left Israel, he made himself a dagger and attached it to his right thigh. Ehud was left handed. Most people I guess even back then were right handed. Otherwise, why would the Bible mention that fact?

Anyway, they all deliver the tribute. I am sure that the guards checked for weapons in the typical places (left thighs were checked for sure!) and then Ehud tells the king that he has a secret message for him. So the king sends everyone else out of the room and locks the door. Ehud then proceeds to stab him with his dagger. The king is soooo fat that the dagger gets lost in the folds of his skin. Ehud then jumps out a nearby window and runs away.

Now comes the really interesting part of the story. the king's guards are waiting outside the throne room. They wait a few minutes and then try the door. When they see it's locked they think the king is going to the bathroom and wants some privacy. So they wait a few more minutes. Finally they knock - no answer. They knock again. Still no answer. Finally, they break down the door and find the king dead on the throne. (No "sitting on the throne" jokes, okay?) by the time they realized what happened, Ehud is already back home.

So I'm not really sure what the biblical significance of this story is, but I know that when I start telling the story, all of a sudden all of the boys in the room get interested in the Bible...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Attention Deficit, puppies, and the ten commandments

If I had the chance to live without Attention Deficit Disorder, I don't think I would take it. No really, I mean it.

I have finally come to think of my ADD as a gift.

Let me explain.
It's like getting a new puppy. the pros outweigh the cons for me... when you pet the pup's fluffy little ears and he falls asleep on your lap after exhausting himself by chasing his tail, he is so darn cute that you forget all about how he chewed up toys and the "accidents" on the kitchen floor. Know what I mean?

I assume my ADD "gift" is why I forget things so easily and why I lose things all of the time. (Where are my keys? No, I mean really right now, Where are they?!) but what I've learned is that along with the negatives comes the ability to think outside the box*, (sometimes waaayyyy outside of the box),the compassion to forgive others mistakes (along with your own, of course) and a knack for enjoying the little things around me that the general population may not even notice.

I once was sitting in a John Maxwell seminar (at least I think it was John Maxwell) and I got a bit distracted. There was a huge copy of the ten commandments on the wall of the church near where we were sitting. As I sat reading them, I suddenly realized that I had never memorized them in order. If you had pushed me, I probably could have come up with all ten out of order, but if there is one thing I have learned, it's that order helps you remember things.

Ten commandments.... ten fingers.... and I just happened to have all ten with me at the church. So by the time John (or whoever it was) was done speaking, I had a foolproof way to remember them forever. Each finger size and position is very important in how I remember all ten in order. (are you curious yet?)

My only problem now is that I can't really teach this to children because of where the third commandment ends up....


* Remind me to tell you about the bill board I saw pertaining to "thinking outside of the box."


Friday, July 23, 2010

There is only room for so much information in this little brain of mine. I know this is true, despite what the scientists say, because recently I have sensed many of my thoughts leaking away, getting lost in the chasm between the said "new thought" and the tongue which is supposed to utter it.
Hence, this page. I think if I can capture enough of "the thought" on the notepad on my cellphone, (For everyone knows that your most incredible thoughts never come when you are sitting at the computer ready to write) I can then transfer the wisdom (Yes, wisdom! or at least thoughts that would make me a lot of money!) to this page.

Are you ready for the adventure to begin? Okay, just one more thought.

ummmmm never mind. It's gone.