Saturday, December 21, 2013

Ducking Reality

I've tried to write the next part of our story 5 times now....5 deleted posts....struggling how to bring God the most glory in this all, so please bear with me.

In the mean time, I woke up this morning at 4...if the sun ain't up, then I shouldn't be either.  But, God likes to lay things on my heart when I'm half awake, so here we go ;)

This week, my facebook feed has blown up with images of scraggly bearded backwoodsmen (and according to my hubby, it's on all of the networks too).

American Christians have worked themselves into a full blown tizzy over the suspension of a man who spoke his mind on a hot button topic.  Now, I'm not saying it's right or wrong...I'm not going to debate the merits of his answer or freedom of speech.   What has a burr in my behind is the fervor and outrage the Church swept up into at record speed.




I'm sorry that sometimes life isn't fair.  Jesus himself warned us that in this life we will have troubles.  The world hated him and therefore it will hate us too.   Are we surprised?

We lose our ever loving minds because a reality tv star loses his job.

Does anyone see the irony of this all?

Duck calls y'all.


Everyday around the world, Christians LOSE their lives for their faith.  Are we outraged by that?

Everyday, people go hungry...babies with empty swollen bellies pass on from this earthly life...

Everyday, we walk right past the orphans and widows...we step over the homeless and the needy....

Everyday, we forget about a lost and fallen world without hope.

American Church, You don't know persecution.  Our country is the Only one in the world where Christianity is on the decline.   Truly persecuted churches are thriving.  People worship in caves and in the middle of the night, their faith is dangerous and real....they don't take Jesus for granted..He is their life, their everything and nothing else matters!

We too have the answer and yet we sit on our couches, fat and happy, remote in hand, patting ourselves on the back for watching  a tv show that emulates good Christian family values.  

Maybe a television show really could change society...

Or maybe, it's us that needs our own perspective change....

Happy Happy Quack Quack and all that jazz.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Delayed Flight

Shortly after we arrived in New Mexico, our plans imploded.

Blind sided by life I guess.

Jobs fell through, certain professions that we thought for sure would be a safe bet for Jim finding employment, never called back...doors were firmly closed..dead bolted...boarded shut...armed guards at all entrances.

It was a huge blow.

So, here we were:  Just moved 1600 miles away from home.  Enough small jobs plus our nest egg kept our heads above water..for the time being.  Air mattresses, craigslist furniture, and the 5 of us...

We knew that we had heard God so clearly back in Illinois.  We knew that we knew what we knew...does that make any sense?  Shock fell in.  Did we hear wrong?  What happened?!?  Where is God...

What happens when God delays?

No, more than that...who are we to judge what is a delay?

He spreads out the northern skies over empty space;
he suspends the earth over nothing.
He wraps up the waters in his clouds,
yet the clouds do not burst under their weight....
He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters...
By His breath the skies become fair...

And these are but the outer fringe of his works;
how faint the whisper we hear of him!
Who then can understand the thunder of his power?
                                                  Job 26:7-14

These amazing works, are just the fringe...

It's like studying a thimble of water and saying that we know all there is to know about the ocean.

What did we do?  We trusted and prayed and sought His face like our lives depended on it..because they did...

Every day we received our manna from heaven.

Every day our needs were met.

I won't lie, it was scary as heck.  There were moments where packing up and heading back north were real options.  But, God never left us.  It wasn't easy.  We were Not in control of our own lives.  Every moment was surrendered.

Looking back, it was a sweet time of learning, faith building, and reliance.  

Job 42:5 was my only thread of hope:

My ears had heard of you,
but now my eyes have seen you.

Without walking through these trials, we never would have seen God like we did..we never would have grown in relationship like that..begun to fathom how deep and wide his love is for us.  I had always heard of God.  I knew of Him, but now I Know Him!

The whole point of the Israelites wandering in the desert was for them to trust and rely on God.  He knew how hard it would be to stay loyal to Him once they arrived at a "safe and plentiful" land.  Total dependence is hard when your needs are already met...

As our journey continues, I want to always let it be known that none of this happened because of our own talent or goodness or skill. 

We walked where He led.  He opened doors that only He knew where there and the places we are going even I can't imagine!  Not to us, but to God goes the glory!

Dear Friend, if you're in a place of delay...if you're struggling with where you're at or even where you're not at...Trust in God.  His timing is everything.  Give Him control over your whole life, not just the easily managed areas.  He loves you with a lavish abandonment that will not lead you wrong!  Walk by faith, trust in His plan for your life...

Without a doubt, there are no delayed flights in heaven...only impatient passengers ;)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Year One

How does one sum up a year....

Where are there words to do justice describing the things that we've seen..the things that we've felt..the miraculous blooming in the desert all around us?

I've been meaning to write a thousand different times, but I never felt like we had an "ending" to the story.   And maybe that's the whole point, there are no endings, just a constant kaleidoscope of life...

This year of ours would make one heck of a Hallmark movie...So I guess, we just start from the beginning:

When we moved here, we were pretty broken..Life had punched us in the gut,knocked the wind out of us all.  But through all of the horrible dark times, God was there.  We felt Him like we have never felt His presence before: telling us it'll be ok, He had a plan, just keep trusting.  So we did (honestly, we had nothing left to hold onto but Hope so don't think of us as some giants of the faith or something).  

Throughout the summer before our move, God blessed Jim's business beyond measure.  He went from a couple of construction jobs a year to like 20 in a summer!  No one knew what was brewing below the surface of our lives, they all just needed construction work done.  We had heard a message on Elisha and the jars of oil.  Jim and I decided that, like the widow, we would set out "jars" to be long as Jim had jobs coming in, we stayed in IL.  

Our first move date was in July..then August...Then October..and Finally November...

We sold what we could, donated countless truckloads to Goodwill, and in the end..we packed up our lives into a 16 foot job trailer.  We said goodbye to the best friends a family could ever have...left our close knit family that we loved so dearly...and headed west.  All of the oil jars provided more than enough to move and begin with a comfortable fresh start. 

The desert was going to be our Promised Land...I guess that I should have reread that story before clinging so tightly to the whole Promised Land notion...

Blessed is the one who trusts in Me Alone...
He is like a tree rooted near the stream...
Not fearing heat or drought,
But staying green and fruitful-No Matter What It Faces.

Jeremiah 17:7-8 (the Shelly paraphrase)

Monday, June 3, 2013

True Grit

We're half way through Dad's trip....and today, I'm beat.

Well, I've been exhausted ever since our trip..sickness, long car rides, and no time to recover before the next thing hit...but'm just done.  The kids haven't been crazy bad, nothing has really gone wrong (except for all of the night noises that make the Lucy in me go crazy)..just tired.

Jim's almost home..

just a few more days...

I Can Do This.....

Nope.  No I can't...but I can't curl up in a ball and cry either...instead, close the door and get some Jesus time in.

Funny how he reveals stuff, things that you know and studied before but through the tired broken-ness he reveals it fresh.

1. I am stubborn.  Pig headed, pitbull with a toy, dumb as an ox...won't quit till I hit the wall or keel over. When going through something hard, I put my head down, set my teeth, square my hips and just push through it.  I'm a rip the bandaid off kind of girl.  I do it all of the time, whether I'm working out or dealing with a crap storm...suck it up buttercup and move on through.

2. Jim and I are a great team...we fill in the weak cracks.  When he's gone, it's really hard.  But maybe this time is for us to learn to lean on the the other rope in our three stranded cord...

3.  Sometimes, no matter how hard you push..ya just ain't gonna move that mountain!  
....and then you sit down in frustration and evaluate the situation....

Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, I will give you rest.  Take my yoke and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

(Matthew 11:28-30)

Before we get all excited about the rest part, Jesus isn't saying "Yo, you tired?  burdened? well, come on out to Jesus Beaches Resort...pull up a chair, slap on some lotion, and rest...."

We still get a yoke...hooked up to a plow, ready to work.  But the yoke is easy, it's burden is light.   When we team up with Jesus, we are no longer the lone ox pushing through the hard ground.  

Jesus is the one pushing through.  He's the lead carrying the brunt of the weight, we just have stop trying to do it ourselves, accept his lead and follow his steps.   I find myself always picking up the God-sized yoke, but it's one that I was never meant to carry.  Take up his yoke, it's just your size Goldilocks.

He is a gentle and humble teacher, find your rest in him.

So, maybe True Grit isn't the power to push through any situation....

Maybe suck it up buttercup, should be let it go cocomo....

I need you more, more than yesterday
I need you Lord, more than words can say
I need you more than ever before
I need you Lord
I need you Lord

Friends, the choice is ours....Grit vs. Need.  In our weakness, we are strong.   So, I'm not a supermom who braves the bumps in the night and still has the strength to keep up with the laundry and the's day at a time, following the steps of Jesus.   Head not down pushing though, but looking up for my strength.

Even in the trials, we are so blessed!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Exhausted and Not Much To Say...

Trying to recover from our trip back doesn't stop just because the mama's matter how hard I try lol.

This guy turned 13 while we were in IL.  13.  I have no words.  I could just cry, not because I'm sad that he's growing up...well maybe, but  13!!!  I remember 13!  There's no way that we can have a 13 yr old son.   I want to somehow slow these moments down...but it just slips through my fingers like sand.

When we got back, Jim had the genius idea of hiking up to the cliff dwellings (a 3 hr drive!!!  plus the hike to the dwellings..which I'm sure are amazing, but my butt had spent the last 2 days in a car.....)    So after some mature discussion (aka loving loudly...not arguing), we decided to take the short trip to Elephant Butte :)

Poor guy, he's so white that he Glows!

My Three Stooges...

Just soaking in the moments...Jim's back gone on business, Jamie sliced his finger open the day after this picture (7 stitches and a major excuse to get out of dishes for 2 weeks)....sigh....our new normal!
Well, dishes and laundry are calling and every time I walk into the kitchen I remember that I need to desperately mop the whole dang house.....a mother's work is never done....

Monday, May 13, 2013


So, we made the long haul back home on Friday...just me and the kiddiepoos..oh and the dog...

Major Mother's Day Surprise!!!

Because Mum was the word until Mother's Day, here's the million facebook posts that I wanted to type but couldn't lol:

* Freakin' Orange Cones!

* No Rain for 80 Days in Cruces, Rained the ENTIRE way Up NM!

* At least an hour per stop...seriously need to invest in preteen sized diapers! (when we were
   kids, we stopped when the car needed gas..not because the billboard looks fun...and
   seriously..the southwest rival the Badlands in billboards)
* Freakin' Orange Cones!!!!!
* If I see the TIV or any other storm chaser vehicles, both me and the middle son will pee our 
   pants..both for different reasons lol.
* "Oklahoma City is nice, but I like Missouri's plain rainbow better." 10 cool detective points if 
   you figure that one out.

* Freaking Orange Cones!!!!!!!!!!!
* How many "turnpikes" does Oklahoma need? Seriously...have my ancient phone, an atlas, 
   and a 13 giving me directions...freakin mapquest!

* Missouri, the land of tobacco outlets, guns and ammo, and porn shops...oh and Churches..

* Sneezed in St. Louis should be a musical...popped my ears and I thought I was going to

Die all the way back up to Northern IL!

*Freakin' I55..or I7whatever..or I39 whatever the heck you are long and boring and       smell like cheese...just kidding about the cheese, but it's loathesome!

* 50 degrees....let me just let that one rest for a minute.....stepped out in El Paso IL to 50
   degrees....El Paso TX was like 60 something (ok, we had a cold front..but normally it has 
   been 90's!)

* Child #3, shaking in his boots..." I am Never leaving NM AGAIN!"

* Reached Auntie Crystal and Uncle Duane's house...child #3 "I am Never going back to NM".

* Surprised my mom at church...spent the last 2 days in the car trying to figure out her reaction..
   nope, not what they thought (and someone had even said She's going to Pass Out!)...just sat 
   there, stunned into a frozen blank stare for like 30 seconds...and then the screaming and 
   jumping, but no passing out!

Best day ever :) 

So sorry about the wonky spacing..tried to fix it..but it won't and I really am so messed up with this drive and alt. change and whatever that I really don't care!!!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Fearless Leader...

After months of waiting, Jim starts his new job today!

Really, it has felt like climbing up a cliff...slow and steady, maybe not the surest of footings but we (really he) just kept focused on the day to day and God made the way. (I think that I've already shared these pics, but they fit so whatev lol)

 If someone would have said to me 10 years ago, heck even last year, that Jim would be in a job like this...with a real honest to goodness office...I would have just laughed!   But God has a plan and a sense of humor!  This life really is about putting aside yourself  (and your preconceived notions about yourself) and taking up all that God has in store.   

Someday I hope to have words that do everything we've been through justice.   
Until then, take hope that no matter what mountains lie ahead, you can make it through Anything with God's help!   The hardest times all of a sudden become the ones that ended up being the most blessed!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Giants, Ramblings, and Just Checking In...

 During Christmas break (aka the Grandparent invasion), we visited this park called the City of Rocks.  It's crazy how new and different everything is for us down here....I find myself connecting with how the Israelites must have felt as they journeyed into their promised land flowing with milk and honey.
 Awe inspiring to say the least...we think of ourselves as this ultimate force, but really we're just a breath...these rock formations have been here practically forever, seen countless generations and fads go by, yet they stay the same....

Jim is gearing up for a work trip, one that could change's scary big....way out of our box..but when you step back, you see that it might just be exactly what God's been preparing him for all along....and maybe our box has been way too small....
 The same God who set these rocks into place, who measured out the waters in the crease of his hand...the one who holds the universe the same one who knew us before we were born and laid out our steps..these very steps, right here and now...for His purpose and His plan.  For such a time as this!
So we are not daunted by impossible odds, sales numbers, and comfort zones...We seek God with our whole heart, His way is the only way...and trust in His timing, in His promises...

At times, we might feel like grasshoppers in the shadow of the giants of this land.  But we have a God who has gone before us, our path is smooth and our footing is sound.  We put all of our trust in the Lord our God because in this world, He is the only sure thing!

If you think about it this next week, some prayers of agreement would be much appreciated.  I hope to be able to disclose more soon....God sure does make a great story out of humble journeys!!!!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Press On

(nope, not talking about fake nails today lol)

It's funny how in my own prayer time and Jim's little devotional that he goes through every morning, we've heard the same messages..uncanny how different verses, but reinforcing the message that God's got this all under control!

During my fasting in January, I read through Daniel (if you haven't, amazing life breathing faith in times of trouble).  After that I went back through Exodus, feeling like we were in the midst of our own desert journey, and God didn't let me down!   Today, I picked it back up and surprise, surprise...just what I needed for today ;)

Israel was on the way to the promised land, but God did not lead them on the shortest route...he took them around the Philistines because he knew that the people would loose heart and turn back.  

So, when the direct path isn't open, Trust..Follow...Remember that God sees the whole picture from beginning to end.  Only he can see what you need to be led around!  

My goal today is to wipe off this funk ' press on and press through.

Philipians 3:14 
But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead.  I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Fight the good fight!  Take hold of the life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

The devil may be a roaring lion, but I am standing behind the ultimate lion my eye on the prize and I'm not backing down!   I may have been knocked down, but I'm not out!

Putting on my Rocky Face today...Eye of the Tiger all of the way baby!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

I am always amazed at how funny life works out...and how I keep thinking this is Not what I was expecting!!!

Saturday, we got all dolled up for a launch of a local business...this company is amazing and something that I feel we can really stand behind...perfect fit for Jim's multiple excited...could this be it?!?  

The Thing that we've been praying for?

Maybe...but just not yet.....

Timing..I always get jacked up on timing.

I like answers and plans and dreams turned to reality Now!

God likes perfect and well pieced together, on His time not ours....

It's like instant pudding.

sure, it tastes good and it'll do in a sugar crazed fix....

But nothing compares to the real stuff.  The stand at the stovetop for an hour melting butter, mixing yolks and sugar and milk to combine into this creamy sweet concoction that satisfies you to the soul.

I don't want to settle for instant.  I want the real deal.  I want to wait on his timing and receive the blessing that he has worked into our lives.

God is a loving Father, who gives his children the desires of their hearts.

This morning, I'm wondering how many times I've gotten instant pudding, when all the while God had something delectable in store...slow cooked to perfection, cooled and topped with whip cream?

Quiet time today led me to Job.  Oh Job, how your life speaks to me.  

Who are we to try and control our lives?  Did we form the earth?  Or tell the ocean where to stop?  Can we bring forth dawn or tell the stars where to shine?  

My small finite mind compared to an infinite God...hmmmm...who would I rather have calling the shots?   


I thank you for this day.  I thank you for the struggles and trials that lead me to a deeper relationship with you.  Father, I pray for strength and be resolute in following be focused on you and nothing else!  You spun the earth into being and yet know every hair on my head and have saved every tear.  You are my redeemer, my strong tower, my shepherd who leads me through the valleys to calm waters.  Thank you Lord for loving me enough to not keep me were I was.  I give you my fears and my life is yours to be molded and moved for your purpose alone.  Thank you for lavishing gifts into our lives...and help me have eyes to see them in the midst of darkness.  I lift up anyone who reads these words.  Father, that your grace and comfort would wrap around them, no matter what their struggle.  You are bigger than any mountain we may face. If we would just call upon you and wait for your rescue!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

A Bit Who-ish

Happened to breeze by this old neglected blog (it's about as pitiful as one of my house plants lol)

I feel a little bit like a Who in Horton Hears a Who....I'm HERE!  I'm Here!  I'm HEEEEERRRREEE!

I've attempted to write countless times, but none of them have seemed right just yet.  This weekend could mean some big things for us, would really appreciate prayers for tomorrow night...God really does have a sense of humor how he works all things out for his children.

Just focusing on Trusting and Believing and realizing that I talk a big faith, but when it comes down to the wire I'm still just a silly, nervous girl. 

I am choosing to stay positive, to speak light into our situations, to glean as much truth from God's word as I possibly can.

Have you every really watched a baby take it's first steps..the clenched fingers wrapped around daddy's?   Maybe we were never supposed to learn to run on our own, but to constantly hold on and be guided by our ever loving Father?   

I've learned so much this past month about depending for everything.  This move has not been at all what I had expected, but then where would the mystery and wonder be in it all if my tiny little brain could wrap around all that the Creator of the Universe has in store for us?!?

Tomorrow..Big Things...I'll be sure to take pictures...and post once we have more news...

Love you all, sorry for being so absent.  One day all will make sense and I'll never believe how far we've really come!!!!!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Keep Walking

It's been a long few weeks...Christmas brought my parents and lots of site seeing and eating and just having fun being together. I have tons of pics to go through...lots of awesome places that we found. heart is just in a rut....I miss my family. ...I miss my friends... I miss my Church... I thought that taking this giant leap of faith to move down here was going to fix everything. Like some magic curtain would unveil this promise land just waiting for us. Instead, we seem to find one hurdle after another. What the heck?!?!? My sister sent me the book The Circle Maker for Christmas. We had done a service on it last year or so, but I needed it now. So, I'm digging in my heels....marking my spot and praying through this! It's funny how God speaks to me sometimes....I wonder if he ever shakes his head and thinks Someday she'll get this...Someday! He really laid it on my heart that once the Israelites crossed into the Promised Land, they still had battles to fight! God didn't just throw them the keys and say Have Fun... He did say that he had given them the land...their battle was won...just had some work to do. Crossroads always starts their year with prayer and fasting....the timing is perfect and the need is great. So, I'll be doing a Daniel fast for the next 10 days....if no answer comes about then I'm going to keep pressing through I've had the veggie tales song Keep Walking in my head for the last few days and that's just what I'm going to do...keep Walking till God knocks down this wall!!!! A quick side note to my friends back home...we are doing ok..seeing God move every day....just not in the way I had thought.....but when is that ever our case!