Sunday, March 30, 2008

Martha and Mary Book Study, Day 3

Chapter 3- The Diagnosis

Luke 10:41
"Martha, Martha, " The Lord answered,
"you are worried and upset about many things"

This chapter is mainly about worry. Maybe it is the life I grew up with, but so much was out of my control that the only way I could stay sane was to live by my life verse Matt 6:34.

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own."

Jesus immediately sees past Martha's complaint and to the core of the problem. It wasn't really about her sister, but about her own worries above and beyond the dinner she was planning.

A couple of key points of the chapter on page 37 and 38

"When Jesus told us not to worry, he wasn't asking us to live in denial, a sugarcoated fairy tale. He wasn't telling us there's nothing to be concerned about. The truth is, we live surrounded by opportunities for fear, anxiety and worry.

Jesus knew this better than anybody.

So why did he tell us not to worry? Jesus knew that a life filled with fear has little room left for faith. And without faith, we can neither please God nor draw close to him for the comfort and guidance we need to face the cares and affairs of everyday life."

Weaver ends the chapter on page 46 with this challenge and statement.

"Come find love, Jesus invites us. Come find a love so perfect that it covers all your faults and pronounces you "not guilty." Come find a love that chases fear out the door! Come find everything you've ever longed for. Come find peace for your soul."

I say amen to this! Amen Jesus. Amen.


Saturday, March 29, 2008

Martha and Mary Book Study, Day 2

Chapter 2: “Lord, Don’t You Care?”

Luke 10:40

Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.
She came to him and asked,
“Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself?
Tell her to help me!”

Weaver describes what she calls the “Three Deadly Ds of Destruction”


These are the tools that Satan uses in this world to keep us from our relationship with God. Martha was distracted which led to discouragement and then doubt.

Here are a couple of paragraphs that hit home for me from pg 25-26

“Doubting God’s love doesn’t require tragedy. It can creep into the everyday just as insidiously, just as dangerously. It happens when our will is crossed, when our needs are ignored, or when we, like Martha, are stuck doing the dirty work while everyone else is having fun.

Now, such doubt in itself is not a sin. It’s simply a thought or feeling that springs up almost involuntarily. But when we let it lodge in our heart long enough, wedged tightly like a poppy seed between our teeth, that little doubt can become a big problem. For doubt, left unchecked, can fester into unbelief. And unbelief, my friend, is not only sin – it’s deep trouble. When we no longer believe in God’s goodness, when we no longer trust in his care, we end up running away from the very Love we need to live. “

This whole chapter for me was remembering once again who is in control of my life. It ultimately isn’t me. God made me. I belong to Him. All I need to do is trust that what He is doing in and around me is because He cares about me. That can be a challenge when prayers seemingly go unanswered or not in the way I think they should be answered.

Weaver ends the chapter by saying this on page 28-29

“The fact is, until we stop doubting God’s goodness, we can’t experience God’s love.

Martha spoke her secret fear aloud, and we can too. But, like Martha, we must stick around long enough to hear the sweet reassurance of his answer.

Don’t expect any explanations or apologies. After all, God is God. If righteous Job couldn’t force God to give an account for his actions, then we shouldn’t expect to always understand his mysterious ways.

But rest assured, God will answer. He longs to reveal his love to you. But you won’t find it by shaking your fist in his face. You won’t find it by barging into his presence and demanding to be treated fairly. You’ll find it by sitting at his feet and remembering who he is. “

So, when I am distracted, discouraged and doubtful, the best thing for me to do is not what the world would have me do. What I need to do is sit and talk with my God. My God who has my ultimate good in mind. I need to hear his reply and learn from him.

Dear Jesus: Help me today to sit at your feet and learn what is “better” for me. Help me to stop doubting your plan so that I can experience your love. Amen.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Martha and Mary Book Study, Day 1

One of my goals over spring break is to finally read all of Having a Mary Heart in a Martha a World by Joanne Weaver. I am going to try and read a chapter a day. If I leave non-fiction for too long, I forget what I was reading about and have to start over. I have so many great books that would help me spiritually, but they are all half finished. So, I am going to give it a shot.

This is the introductory chapter that I have read at least twice if not more than that. I think the best thing for me to do is post the relevant verses and my favorite quote from the chapter and then just see what happens from there.

Chapter 1, The Tale of Two Sisters

Luke 10:38-42

38 As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”

41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”

My favorite quote says this on page 9:

“Two completely different women undergo a transformation right before our eyes; a holy makeover. The bold one becomes meek, the mild one courageous. For it is impossible to be in the presence of Jesus and not be changed……The choice he offered to these two very different sisters – and the transformation they experienced – is exactly what he offers to each of us as well.”

It is exciting to think that Jesus is transforming us everyday. We are not the same as we were yesterday. Some days it is big chunks of clay that are being molded, but most days Jesus just whittles away at me. Removing my pride, teaching me to have more faith, learning to forgive for my sake, etc. The list is long and just when I think I have it figured out, my life gets busy like Martha and I start to whine.

Dear Jesus-Thank you for never giving up on me, meeting me where I am and transforming me daily.


Happy 39th birthday for the first time!

Just tooting my own horn! It is my blog afterall and I can pretty much do what I want. Spring break starts today after work is over and then we are going out to dinner as a family - my most favorite people of all! I am so grateful to be turning 39. Blessings to all today as you celebrate my birthday!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

What will you choose today?

My Husband forwarded this email to me. I read it just to say I did most of the time. I truly loved this story - true or not! It contains my life verse at the end Matt 6:34. Enjoy


John is the kind of guy you love to hate. He is always in a good mood and always has something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, 'If I were any better, I would be twins!'

He was a natural motivator.

If an employee was having a bad day, John was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.

Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up and asked him, 'I don't get it!

You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?'

He replied, 'Each morning I wake up and say to myself, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or ... you can choose to be in a bad mood

I choose to be in a good mood.'

Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or...I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it.

Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or... I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life.

'Yeah, right, it's not that easy,' I protested.

'Yes, it is,' he said. 'Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people affect your mood.

You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how you live your life.'

I reflected on what he said. Soon hereafter, I left the Tower Industry to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I made a choice about life instead of reacting to it.

Several years later, I heard that he was involved in a serious accident, falling some 60 feet from a communications tower.

After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, he was released from the hospital with rods placed in his back.

I saw him about six months after the accident.

When I asked him how he was, he replied, 'If I were any better, I'd be twins...Wanna see my scars?'

I declined to see his wounds, but I did ask him what had gone through his mind as the accident took place.

'The first thing that went through my mind was the well-being of my soon-to-be born daughter,' he replied. 'Then , as I lay on the ground, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or..I could choose to die. I chose to live.'

'Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?' I asked

He continued, '..the paramedics were great.

They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the ER and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read 'he's a dead man'. I knew I needed to take action.'

'What did you do?' I asked.

'Well, there was a big burly nurse shouting questions at me,' said John. 'She asked if I was allergic to anything 'Yes, I replied.' The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, 'Gravity' .'

Over their laughter, I told them, 'I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead.'

He lived, thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude.. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully.

Attitude, after all, is everything

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.' Matt 6:34

After all today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Spring Reading Thing 2008

I am so incredibly late at joining this reading challenge held over at Callapidder Days. Here is my short list. All novels this time. I just can't seem to get the non-fiction completed! Argh!

*The Note by Angela Hunt

*The Elevator by Angela Hunt

*Private Justice and Shadow of Doubt. NewPointe 911 series by Terri Blackstock

With the daughter's synchro, end of year grading and activities, I will be lucky to get these 4 books read. I am going to go peruse some lists and add to my ever growing pile.

Happy Reading!

Clearance Racks

I always wonder what causes older people to dress the way that they do. I think that I have found the answer - clearance racks.

Now, don't get me wrong, I live for clearance item clothes. But honestly, everything on the rack is not appealing. Sometimes there is a reason why the item hasn't sold in the first place. Maybe the item is just out of style or it is in a not so attractive color.

My mother in-laws love language is gift giving. She loves to buy me clothing for my birthday and Christmas from the afore mentioned clearance racks. I have grown accustomed to trying to make them stylish. She at least buys the correct size. When is it okay to say, "this is ugly and I can't make it work".

I love my mother-in-law. She loves me and remembers those days that my own mother doesn't seem to have time for. Yet, what am I going to do with a mustard yellow shirt and a flaired jean skirt....


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

New Car Smell

We are in the process of shopping for a new vehicle for the husband. He is very much into researching every vehicle. I just know what I like and buy it. He looks at all the safety information while I am concerned about storage and cupholders. It is a good thing that we have each other - as a balancing act. He has narrowed it down to about 4 truck/SUV type vehicles. We want to be "environmentally friendly", but the Hybrids are still about $5000 more than a traditional engine. We still have a few months to pay on my mom-mobile, so it isn't anything urgent. The boy has picked out what he wants.

I will be getting my mid-life crisis car (a red Mazda Miata) way before he get one of these. So, happy autoshow dreaming to all of you out there!



Friday, March 14, 2008

I love this chocolate bunny cartoon

A teacher's life

There are ebbs and flows in a teachers life. This is the hardest part of the year for teacher's and students. We really haven't had a break since Christmas and the weather can be cloudy and gloomy here in the great North. After spring break, you can see the end. The energy of the staff and students picks up as Prom roles around and the Seniors prepare for the next stage of their lives. It is an exciting time of year - after spring break that is. We are waiting until March 28th before ours starts. Only a few more days....

This week many students were in panic mode because they realize how little time is left to pass classes. We have also had issues with the typical high school problems - fights, etc. We all have cabin fever and it wears on a person. I have also had a few tough conversations with parents about holding their child accountable for learning. I can only do so much - motivate, make the lessons interesting, and provide resources to learn. I am getting a little worn down, but my husband reminds me that I get this way every year. I get discouraged and wonder if this is where God wants me to be. I just want to throw in the towel. I am reminded to hold on until Spring Break. O Jesus help it to come quickly...

Hope the your week is great as you plan for the upcoming Easter celebration. I will try to remember to post a copy of our yearly Easter letter this week.

Blessings to all!

Friday, March 07, 2008


I just wanted say thanks to you that read my measly blog and said a quick prayer for my daughter and her synchro tryouts. We found out yesterday all the details.

She is on the extended A team as a freshman! Yikes. Okay, in english. This is the highest ability synchro team that we have - only the best can swim on it. It is like being on the Varsity starting line-up in any other sport. I am soooooo proud of my daughter. She works so hard to be the best, practice and more practice. I am just praying now that she can live up to the coaches expectations. This is just the beginning. The nice thing is that her coach is a believer. I couldn't have her swimming for a better person!

Thanks again!


Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Synchro begins

My daughter swims on our high school synchronized swimming team. She is a devoted swimmer and will defend this sport to the bitter end. It is like running for 5 minutes without breathing - and unlike running, you could drowned. She is so excited for the summer olympics and the synchro competition.

This has been the first week of practice and she has been counting down the days since Feb. 1. Tryouts for the various teams are today. I know that she will do her best and work hard. I am like any mom and want to write a pleading letter to the coach to give her a chance, you won't be disappointed. Yet, I know that my daughter can be better and wants to work to do that. I also know that this coach picks her favorite swimmers - not always based on ability. Charity is a people pleaser and I just pray today that the coach will see Charity's heart and put her in the best possible position to succeed. My heart and mind is thinking of her today.

If you think about it. Say a quick prayer that Charity will swim her bast at tryouts and that the coaches will place her with the best team.


Monday, March 03, 2008

God's Favorite Day

Our family had some time after church Saturday night to watch a movie together. We watched Tuck Everlasting. Charity had seen it before in school because they read the book together. The movie follows the story of the Tuck family that found a spring that causes them to live forever and never die or age. They are in hiding in a forest - it is dangerous to live forever and even a curse. One of the boys falls in love with a "mortal" and tries to convince her to drink of the fountain and then they could live forever together.

The father Tuck has a conversation with her so that her choice would be her own. He says something profound - at least it was to me. "To live and get older is a part of life. Death is just a part of living. To live a life without death is to never change - to be stuck forever they way you are." My son and I cried at the end when the girl chooses the life with death at the end. It is a bittersweet ending.

The interesting part of this occurred Sunday morning when I was making breakfast and Eli was helping me. We had a conversation that went something like this...

Eli: Mom, Do you know what day will be God's favorite day?

Mom: (I was still half asleep) No, what day is that?

Eli: The day that we die and get to meet Him for the first time.

My eight year old son gets it! He watched a fictional movie and made the connection that death is a part of living and maybe even the best part! He is not afraid to live and then die, because heaven is just around the bend and that will be God's favorite day. I just hugged him. From the mouths of babes.

Blessings today