Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Heart Sings!

Once upon a time, the scent of autumn lingered in the air. It was that time again, the time of year when leaves cover the ground in an array of colors. Taking in deep breaths of calm, crisp air, my heart felt at peace. Friends, let me just remind y'all, when Jesus said to follow Him, He never said it would be easy! Yet, now I've finally reached a point where my mind is at ease. I am perfectly content and overjoyed with where God has me right now.

This past weekend I celebrated my 20th birthday. The Lord has truly blessed me and continues to do so. I was overwhelmed with some of those blessings last weekend. We took a drive to a pumpkin patch and in the car I was surrounded by gifts. When I speak of gifts, I don't mean the kind that comes wrapped and tied with ribbon. The gifts I refer to are my parents... my brother...and a dear friend whose practically another brother. I can't begin to describe the feelings I have for those God has placed in my life. Give me family and friends any day over birthday presents! It is time and memories with them that mean more to me than anything in this world.

As the weekend came to an end, I spent my last day back home at my old high school with the special needs students I had interned with my senior year. Oh how I've missed them! As I walked the long hallway leading down to their classroom, I felt like running! There is nothing like being surrounded by a group of these kids! They love unconditionally. They are like milk to my cookies. I don't know where I'd be today if God hadn't placed that passion in my life... to work with special needs. They bring me back into reality. I get so focused on "me, me, me," and forget about others. I am happy and free around them. Seeing them made my birthday weekend that much more special.

Friends, I'm just so happy! I pray you are just as happy! I understand that life isn't always that delicious pumpkin spice latte that warms your heart on a blustery autumn day. However, I do hope that if your life is not very happy, you find that latte soon! I know it's a typical Sunday school solution, but God makes for the PERFECT latte! He warms my heart like no other! I am satisfied with who I am because of Him and I am fine with it being just the two of us. God has placed me in a loving church body and group of friends. I need not worry with what the future holds because the present is all that matters, and that amazes me. I am in love with my heavenly Father as He has consumed my soul.

My prayer is for you to feel your heart sing! I pray that you allow God to consume you in His love. I pray you relieve yourself of worry and place all mind, soul, and body into the hands of our Father.

Contentment in the Word:

"Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! For in our union with Christ he has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world." Ephesians 1:3

"Fill us each morning with your constant love, so that we may sing and be glad all our life." Psalm 90:14

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Have I Told You Lately?

Once upon a time, I lived in a little ranch style house in Texas. My momma stayed home and my daddy worked. I remember waiting to hear the car pull up around 5pm every day, the time my daddy came home from work. My little brother and I would race to the saloon doors (yes... it was a VERY southwestern house) and scream, "Daaaddddddyyyyyy!" Wow, that seems like only yesterday.

As I grew older, my brother and I went from greeting our dad at the door to hollering "hey dad" from another part of the house. Then we hit the teen years. We went from hollering to waiting for him to come into the room where we were just to say, "Hey dad. How was your day?" Looking back, I wonder just how we lost that excitement we once had. Most every kid has had the parent they are closer to. Me and my momma have been inseparable; but my dad and I haven't always been.

It was this summer when I really started asking myself how well I knew my dad. I knew he had a job; though I still can't figure out to this day quite what he does... he's just too smart! He's taken us on wonderful vacations. He's been an amazing provider. He and my momma raised me to have a strong relationship with my heavenly Father by always pointing me back to Him. I know my dad's favorite candy. I know somewhat of his childhood. Most importantly, I know how much he loves me. That's when it hit me. Have you ever realized just how important it is to know you are loved by your daddy? It is Him I look to to see Christ. He is the one that sets the example for how we are to love others. My dad loves me no matter what mistakes I make. He believes in me and motivates me to do my best. He's taught me that my best is enough and because of that I continue to strive in my spiritual life and academically. You know that gut wrenching feeling when you disappoint someone? How about when you disappoint your dad? Now, how about our heavenly Father?

This school year, God has taught me so much. Just when I wonder what's next, I take a look at where I am. In these past few weeks, my dad accepted a job in Ohio. He'll be living with my momma and brother a whole lot farther away than now. You know that saying, "You don't realize what you have until it's gone." Well thankfully, my family isn't gone... but they'll be in another state. This is something I know I will struggle with as I struggle with the idea of it now. I never realized just how much I loved my dad until recently. I've always loved him... but this move is making us closer. I can't say where I'd be today if it weren't for him. God has truly blessed me! I am so thankful to be my daddy's little girl. Ever find yourself asking, "Have I told you lately...." Well, to my dad...
Have I told you lately just how much I love you? Have I told you how much you mean to me? You mean the world. I am proud of you. And I couldn't have asked for anyone better.

The Bible Says:

"Fill us each morning with your constant love, so that we may sing and be glad all our life." Psalm 90:14

"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother- which is the first commandment with a promise- that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy a long life on the earth. Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in training and instruction of the Lord." Ephesians 6:1-4

Monday, October 10, 2011

Just a Little Inquisitive...

Once upon a time, it had been a long day. Beginning with an early morning class (well, maybe not so early), and then sitting for nearly two hours in my afternoon class (our professor let us out nearly an hour early), I was ready for the day to end. I had plans to meet up with friends that night and attend a bonfire where we'd roast s'mores. Let me just say, chocolate, marshmallows, and graham crackers are delicious and whoever came up with the idea to put them all together was an absolute genius. While sitting around the bonfire that night, two young men walked up. I couldn't help but watch them out of the corner of my eye. Call me creeper if you want, but you know you've done it too! I sat there pondering what I'd do if one of them came over to talk to me. I found myself paying more attention to the guy in the button down shirt and jeans than the one wearing glasses. Rationalizing my thoughts, I remembered that slight problem I've had my whole life, I go for the wrong type of guys. Why on earth would this one be any different? So I played it cool and decided to let life happen. Within the hour, people began to clear out and the guy I found quite attractive joined in conversation with me and some of my friends. You know that saying guys and girls have: "They were great until they opened their mouth." Yes ladies and gentlemen, I am the queen bee when it comes to finding these types of guys. Hence what you've read in other posts about my "guy theories."

So let's just cut to the chase. My friends and I have him over for a game of Uno after the bonfire. I was pretty excited until he asks....
What can I bring? I have beer, vodka, and gatorade. Any of those sound good?

What on earth is it about guys? Must they all drink? What is the cause of their nonsense? How about this? Question asked: do you buy or smoke pot?

I won't buy it, but if it's available, I'll smoke it.

This is why girls have trouble finding dates. These boys need help. However, boys aren't the only ones. I have found many girls to be the same. It's just sad.

We recently had a talk on drinking at Campus Christian Fellowship. It's not a sin to drink. However, it is a sin to drink until you are drunk. The question is: what are your motives to drink?

Do you think that by drinking, it will solve your problems? Do you think that it will help you make friends? Do you smoke because it makes you look cool? Do you smoke to relieve stress?

Now then, once you've answered those questions: have any of you found that drinking and smoking solves anything?

I am not here to judge those who take part in drinking, smoking, or anything for that matter. God is the almighty judge. I'm just an inquisitive individual who loves to reason. I find that being myself around others is enough and I can be absolutely goofy without being drunk or high. I don't care what people think of me. God made me in His image. I love being me!

So ladies and gentlemen, take a look at yourself! You are amazing! You are wonderfully made! Our heavenly Father made you perfect and whole. Now take a step back and let go! If you find you don't like something about yourself, or problems are boiling up, give them to God! Stop trying to solve everything on your own! Take the easy way out and give it to God!

I think we spend too much time thinking about ourselves and not our heavenly Father! Next time you go to take a drink, offer a drink, get a high, or heaven knows... think about our Daddy in heaven. Think about how much He loves you.

My prayer for you is that God's desires become your desires. I pray that you find the strength to break down the walls that separate you from your friends and our heavenly Father. Dear Lord, help us to love and be who we are!

What does the Bible say?

"God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears. Look at Him; give Him your warmest smile. Never hide your feelings from Him. When I was desperate, I called out, and God got me out of a tight spot." Psalm 34:4-6

"We are bringing you the Good News and are telling you to turn away from these worthless things and turn to the living God." Acts 14:15