random photos from thansgiving at mum's parents with her sister and fam. be warned, there's nothing artistic.

the kid table
grandpa, bre & nate

grandma with her "scarf"

florida weather

hungry {crazy} sisters
n goofing off, joe, bre, mum

the original thanksgiving folks
grandpa's mug. (see, it's in the genes)

lots of hilarious quotes from this game:"that's unfair! i'm a boy, how am i going to know how to draw mascara!? redraw!" i love my fam. they're hilarious.
i was especially grateful for: 1. grandpa's "new leg". he was free from his wheelchair and able to walk this year. 2. grandma's willingness to have the whole noisy crew over, and cook; depsite having chemo wednesday. i'm so blessed: 3 sets of grandparents. 2 parents. 3 siblings. godly friends in fl, tx, va, nc, new orleans, canada, and wales. God is good.


kept by God

"Thou Creator, Upholder, Proprietor of all things,
I cannot escape from thy presence or control,
nor do I desire to do so.
My privilege is to be under the agency of omnipotence, righteousness,
wisdom, patience, mercy, grace.
Thou art love with more than parental affection...
It is the discovery of thy goodness alone that can banish my fear,
allure me into thy presence,
help me to bewail and confess my sins.
When I review my past guilt and am conscious
of my present unworthiness
I tremble to come to thee, I whose foundation is in the dust,
I who have condemned thy goodness,
defied thy power, trampled upon thy love,
rendered myself worthy of eternal death.
But my recovery cannot spring from any cause in me,
I can destroy but not save myself.
Yet thou hast laid help on One that is mighty,
for there is mercy with thee, exceeding riches in thy kindness through Jesus.
May I always feel my need of Him.
Let thy restored joy be my strength;
May it keep me from lusting after the world,
bear up heart and mind in loss of comforts,
enliven me in the valley of death,
work in me the image of the heavenly..."
{'valley of vision.}
This past week God showed me such kindness. I took advantage of my lack of computer, tv, other distractions; and my lighter work load to spend extended time with Him. I'm ashamed to say this, at first I was afraid I'd be overwhelmed by the sin revealed to me. That I'd be more discouraged then before. Oh the foolishness of me! He was faithful to reveal sin. But even more faithful to show His grace. To call to mind His mercy poured out on the cross. One morning in particular, He inturrupted my prayers and just said "Be still". That hour spent delighting in Him and worshiping His majesty did more good for my soul then the previous 20 minutes of "talk". (PLEASE don't think I'm saying that is an unfruitful practice, in this case it was just not what God wanted me to do). How very kind He is. "I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings".
((when i have thanksgiving photos uploaded i'll probably share some))



Shout for joy to God, all the earth; sing the glory of his name;
give to him glorious praise!
Come and see what God has done:
he is awesome in his deeds toward the children of man.
Bless our God, O peoples; let the sound of his praise be heard,
who has kept our soul among the living
and has not let our feet slip.
For you, O God, have tested us; you have tried us as silver is tried.
Come and hear, all you who fear God,
and I will tell what he has done for my soul.
I cried to him with my mouth, and high praise was on my tongue.
If I had cherished iniquity in my heart,
the Lord would not have listened.
But truly God has listened;
he has attended to the voice of my prayer.
Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer
or removed his steadfast love from me!
~from psalm 66
{i'm housesitting all week, so there will be few if any posts.}


running hard

To whom then will you compare me, that I should be like him?
says the Holy One.
Lift up your eyes on high and see: who created these?
He who brings out their host by number, calling them all by name,
by the greatness of his might,
and because he is strong in power not one is missing...
Why do you say, O Jacob ..."My way is hidden from the LORD...
Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God, Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might
he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary...
but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
~Isaiah 40.25-31
I know I've shared this before. But it describes my current season of waiting on God so well. There are temptations to be weary. Temptations for my heart to wonder or wander. But by His grace, my heart is stayed on Him. I want to use this time of rest to draw ever nearer. He's shown me that part of the "why" is preparation. It's a time to lay sure foundations of drawing from Him that will serve me when the tempest comes. Oh how kind He is! I have nothing better to do than delight in my Savior. Then, indeed can I run hard after Him.
"The joy of the Lord is my strength"!


"out of the wellspring of the heart the mouth speaks"

A few days ago, I saw a glimpse into my heart. I was shocked. My words revealed a part of me that did NOT say "whatever my God ordains is right."

I was praying for a certain circumstance. As I prayed Romans 8.28 I couldn't believe what words came out: "God, may this be for our sooner good." Oh how easily sin hides! I'm ashamed to admit I'd think that. While I was praying, no less! The words themselves are not sinful, but what they reveal about my heart. I know my sin shouldn't surprise me. Too often it does. It hides itself well, and I'm too willing to let it stay hidden. God is not. Nor is He shocked. He knows what I'm capable of--even more than I do. Yet He willingly forgives. He sent His Son to take my just punishment. Fully knowing every sin I'd ever commit...What relieving freedom! Freedom that lessens the gravity of sin? By no means! Nor does it hinder sorrow over my sin. It provides a freedom to receive grace. Mine is a salvation based not on what I do, but on what Christ DiD. Anyway I ought to quite rambling and just let Paul speak for me:

"But now the righteousness of God has been manifested
apart from the law,
although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—
the righteousness of God
through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe.
For there is no distinction:
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
and are justified by his grace as a gift,
through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood,
to be received by faith.
This was to show God’s righteousness, because
in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins."
Rom 3.21-25

{{I share this so ya'll will know my heart needs constant watch. Yes, I can say I trust God, that overall I'm content with what He ordains. It is true. (only as He's done that work) But I still don't always win the everyday battles. I'm thankful He exposes my heart. Stands ready to forgive. And to supply grace for next time. It is far more than I deserve!}}


objective truth from...starbucks?

Last week I swung through Starbucks en route to the doctor. I can't say much for the state of my heart...I certainly wasn't viewing doctors as a means of grace. The barista must have seen "sin of ungratefulness" emanating from me. I think she said "would you like some conviction with that?" Anyway, later as I sat in the room of perpetual anticipation I read the following:
"The Way I See It #196
The greatest leader is a servant. Don't be a boss.
Be a real leader, a servant leader.
A servant leader is a winner. Even when he loses everything, even when he loses his life, a servant leader wins it all. --Pat Williams "
Even though it doesn't say "Christ died for sinners" it immediately brought the gospel to mind. I was convicted in my non-rejoicing attitude. Doctors are a gift. An undeserved one. How kind of Him to interrupt my little grumbling fest, and in such a lighthearted way. I laughed. God is so kind. Who says He doesn't have a sense of humour?

{{ps. ya'll will be delighted to know that green bay is 6-1. we're not underdogs this year! yeah baby. i watch them play with real hope, instead of pleading for a swift death. proof that God cares about such menial things as football?}}