Friday, March 25, 2011


I had a sweet visit with a friend one morning this week. God pretty much plopped her right down into my life after our move and said, "Here you go! Here is a sister in Christ who will walk alongside you for this phase of the journey I have called you on." He is so cool like that! (We won't mention that she will be moving away this summer. No, we won't talk about that.) Anywho...we were chatting amongst children fighting over toys, children writing on dry erase boards with ink pens, and children laughing in delight. A certain book came up. This certain book has come up in so many various ways the past few weeks. I know God keeps bringing it to my mind and in conversation for a reason.

It is A Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. Have you heard of it? Have you read it? I am thoroughly excited about reading it. I can't wait to get my hands on it, read it, highlight the parts that hit me between the eyes and really, really, really contemplate all of the things that I am grateful for because I take so much, SO MUCH for granted in this life. I am a "see the glass half empty" kind of person typically.

It drives my heart nuts when my head is so full of worry and anxiety over really stupid things. I have never had to worry about life and death situations with my kids. They are healthy. God has seen us through a couple of very scary things, but I have not had to worry over a pronouncement of terminal illness. I have never had to worry about a phone call from the bank saying that something that belonged to us no longer did due to finances. There have been bills paid late here and there, reconnection fees have been paid before, but it has always worked out. I have a roof over my head, clothes on my back and food in our pantry. The other stuff is truly just the cream on top that we can live with or without and I take it for granted.

My friend told me about his statement from the book that WHACKED me hard between the eyes. It was something about how when we worry or stress out about our circumstances or issues at hand, we are basically calling ourselves atheists because if we truly believe, then we know He WILL take care of us and we have no need to worry or stress. WHACK! I am so guilty of worry and stress, like I need to be totally convicted and the key needs to be thrown away guilty. How can I call myself a Christian when I don't LET myself just trust? Has He EVER let go of me? Has He ever not provided in His way, in His time? No!

So today at Bible study I started a new study called Plan B by Pete Wilson and guess what...It totally falls into line with what I am wrestling with. Will I truly trust Him when my plan doesn't go the way I think it should go? So excited from what I will glean over the next 5 weeks in this study!

During our worship time, they played a video of a song that I had not heard before and am kind of embarrassed to say I didn't realize it was J.J. Heller. Hello! Where have I been? But this song hit me between the eyes again! WHACK! Like by the end of the very first line, I was choking back tears and hoping I wouldn't go into sobbing hysterics. It was beautiful. Just beautiful. I want to share it with you here. (Remember to scroll down and pause my music player to be able to hear the video.)

And by the way....I bought the Ann Voskamp book today and can't wait to start it and just soak it in!

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Favorite

My hubby is home in between classes today and will be eating supper with us this evening! This is exciting stuff because usually the girls and I eat alone and my big plans for having something home made and yummy are thrown out the window when supper time rolls around. Tonight though I need to cook since we are eating as a family so I am making a family favorite. It doesn't get made that often but when it does....WOW! Everyone loves is is so good. I haven't shared the recipe here before so I better get on that.

Chicken Enchiladas
1/2 c. chopped onion
4 T. butter
1/4 c. flour
2 c. chicken broth
1 t. chicken bouillon
8 oz. sour cream, room temp
3 c. shredded, cooked chicken
2 c. shredded cheese
4 oz. can green chiles, drained
1 t. chili powder
10 - 12 tortillas

Sautee onion in butter until tender. Whisk in flour and add chicken broth and bouillon. Cook and stir until thickened. Remove from heat and add sour cream. In large bowl combine chicken, 1 c. sauce, 1 c. cheese, chiles, and chili powder. Mix well. Fill each tortilla with mixture. Roll up and arrange in a 9 x 13 inch pan. Spoon remaining sauce over tortillas. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

YUM! This is a recipe that I have made since the early days of married life and it is still a winner in hubby's heart!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Great Cathedrals

I've had this post floating around in my head for a week now. I joined a Bible study at a local church with a friend of mine. It is entitled Ruth: Loss, Love and Legacy by Kelly Minter. Our last session for this study is this coming week. It is an excellent study and I would recommend to anyone who has the opportunity to do it.

I didn't really sit down and pick a study that I wanted to join. I joined because my friend asked me to and I just picked the one she was doing. When I saw the cover of the book something struck deep within me...loss, love, and legacy. Wow! Those are three really meaning-filled and profound words.

Loss: I have been aching lately with loss and missing my mom. It was much stronger during the holidays this year than last. I think it has alot to do with all that is on our plate as a family and being away from my extended family. Sometimes I feel really alone tucked down here and just want to call her. When I am at the end of my rope with tattling and kids not sharing and Hubby has been gone for the third entire day in a row, I just want to call and beg her to come and help me, just be with me. So "loss" is a huge thing that I am struggling with. My loss isn't as huge as Naomi's loss was but it's still a loss and it is where I am.

Love: At my church's Mom's group a few sessions back we had a speaker come in and talk to us about grace. She ended by reading I Corinthians 13 from the perspective of a Mother. It brought tears to my eyes and struck a chord in my heart. I have not been the most loving of moms lately. I have been short, impatient and easily frustrated lately. I think it has alot to do with just being cooped up due the winter weather and lots of illness, but still...

"Love is patient, love is kind (even when we've cooped up for days upon days and we feel loopy). It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud (even when I feel frumpy and out of place, or my kid is throwing a fit and no one else's is). It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs (even when I am at the end of my rope dealing with the terrible pre-twos and emotional 4 year old and I am tired from interrupted sleep and feel like I am single-parenting). Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." (That is my take on it.)

Legacy: I really, really, really want to leave a legacy for my girls that is filled with love, constant, cherishing, unconditional. I want them to look back and remember their mom was kind, loving, giving, and strong only when under the wings of her Jesus.

As I said this is our last week and we will be moving on to another study called "Plan B." That one has piqued my interests too. I know one thing for sure that I have adored being with these other women each Friday morning knowing that they are real and striving for the same goal as I. As I work on the last week of this study, a skit by Nicole Johnson came flooding my memory. It totally speaks about building legacies even in the midst of the mundane task of life. I want to share it here with you and hope that maybe it will resonate with you as it has with me!
(Remember to pause the music player at the bottom of the page before you hit play.)

These are my cathedrals. Aren't they grand???? I sure think so and can not comprehend why I am allowed to build within their little walls!
Family Pictures