Monday, December 31, 2012

A Year in Review - 2012

I took some time today to look back over my journals for 2012 and post a few things that stuck out:

January 3
Today I am soaking in the verse Jeremiah 17:7-8. When I am confident in who Christ is and who I am in Christ, He sustains me with His water. I feel my faith strengthen. I am rooted in Christ.

“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit."

February 15
"Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4

March 21
Proverbs 31 Devotional

Jeremiah 17:7-8
“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit."

I prayed for a way. Someone ignited a spark I didn't seek this. God is simply answering a prayer that I had put aside.

April 18
"As I seek to hear God's voice, do I really desire to hear what His purposes are or do I just desire to pursue my own and hope for His blessing?" Priscilla Shirer from Discerning the voice of God.

May 17
I am learning that the roots of gratitude grow deepest in the sober soil of remembering how hopeless my life is without God." Lisa Harper

June 28
Comparison is the thief of joy.

If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.  If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.  If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love. 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (The Message)

Jesus is LORD!

July 8th
I have started to memorize Jeremiah 17:7-8
“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit."

Jeannette gave me a journal called "So Long, Insecurity" by Beth Moore and the verse in the beginning was Jer. 17:7-8).

August 5
My last day at A Church of Living Hope.

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth. 3 John 1:4

It's just not at the church that I love.

"Remember God leads us gently ~ He never pushes or pressures us to do anything. His yoke is easy and His burden is light." Joyce Meyer

September 19
"Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Help me Lord not hold on to bitterness. Empty my heart of the pride I may have. Help me to love people for where they are and not to change them. Amen.

October 12
This is the verse that showed up three times last year. It speaks right to my heart. It is the verse that was at the end of The 700 club today.

"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart." Galatians 6:9 

November 11
How can I obey if I am not hearing God speak? I have to be reading my Bible and praying. And for me that means consistently journaling.

December 30
"Let the peace of Christ rule in your heart." Colossians 3:15

Growing Up Together - Parent and Child
What is godly parenting?

Doing well means - growing (in wisdom and years) and earning favor (with God and people).

You can do the best you can do but the rest is in the Lord's hands.

Most things are caught not taught.

Your kids are going to imitate your good and bad.


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas 2012

So grown up!
Noah tickets for Sight and Sound in March.

Christmas Eve Snow Flurries


Electric Scooter. Best gift EVER. 


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Pictures from Theresa

Click here to view these pictures larger

Growing in Faith

Growing in Faith (From the NLT)

"By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.
In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.
The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." 2 Peter 1:3-8

Don't Put It Off (From The Message)

 3-4Everything that goes into a life of pleasing God has been miraculously given to us by getting to know, personally and intimately, the One who invited us to God. The best invitation we ever received! We were also given absolutely terrific promises to pass on to you—your tickets to participation in the life of God after you turned your back on a world corrupted by lust.
 5-9So don't lose a minute in building on what you've been given, complementing your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness, and generous love, each dimension fitting into and developing the others. With these qualities active and growing in your lives, no grass will grow under your feet, no day will pass without its reward as you mature in your experience of our Master Jesus. Without these qualities you can't see what's right before you, oblivious that your old sinful life has been wiped off the books.

Friday, December 21, 2012

I wanted...

I wanted praise.
You gave me humility.

I wanted security.
You gave me my daily needs.

I wanted attention.
You made me invisible.

I wanted happiness.
You showed me joy.

I wanted to be good.
You asked for holiness.

I wanted to be capable.
You made me say, "I can't".

I wanted a career.
You gave me purpose.

I wanted fulfillment.
You gave me brokenness.

I offered commitment.
You desired surrender.

I wanted lots of things.
You gave me much more than I could have wanted.

This was written by a dear friend of mine in September. But I needed to read it this morning.

I have been feeling despair over the last couple of days. I never read the newspaper but felt that I should read each victims name and what was written about them. I am talking about the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary. I was in tears. I had to put the paper down and pray.

Just as I was praying, my friend shows up. She could have come any time during the day, but she came just a the moment that I needed her most! (Thanks God).

After she left, I decided to do my Bible study during the baby's second nap. I had my James workbook and my Bible. But after a little bit I realized that I needed to just go to Psalms and read the Bible. God's words were so comforting.

But today my day starts with a recorded message from Amanda's principal. There was a rumor that because today was suppose to be the end of the world, that a student had threatened to bring a gun to school and shoot everyone. The police were called in to check out the accusation. The rumor was found to be false. I have now received that recorded message a second time.


I said to Amanda at breakfast that she didn't need to be afraid. (She seemed so uninterested in my conversation.) Yes, the world will end but it just won't be today. No one knows when it will be. Not even Jesus.

But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Mark 13:32

 But we do not have to fear. Fear is of the enemy! And remember, we will be in the arms of Jesus when we die. And we are going to die...some day. But Heaven is like Disney World times a million. We will have cookies and ice cream every day. We won't have guns and violence. It will be sunny every day. She said  "yeah" as she is hurrying to get her Christmas present's bag together to take to the bus.

Yes, 10 out of 10 people die. That's fact.

But God is good all the time. That's fact too.

The world is not good. Sometimes when I hear people say "Life is good" I just want to rebuttal and say....No it's not. Your life may be good at this moment, but that will soon change.

Don't get me wrong. I love the Life is Good products. We have many of them. But it is not fact.

Soooo, where am I right now? I am sad. I am allowed to be sad. It's ok to be sad. But it's not ok to stay there. I have the comfort of God and His Word.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Psalm 147:3

I will rejoice, listen to music, wrap presents, finish baking and be still and know that He is God!

Have a fantastic, fabulous, FAITHFUL Friday!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Dear Jesus,

It's a good thing you were born at night. This world sure seems dark. I have a good eye for silver linings. But they seem dimmer lately.

These killings, Lord. These children, Lord. Innocence violated. Raw evil demonstrated.
The whole world seems on edge. Trigger-happy. Ticked off. We hear threats of chemical weapons and nuclear bombs. Are we one button-push away from annihilation?

Your world seems a bit darker this Christmas  But you were born in the dark, right? You came at night. The shepherds were nightshift workers. The Wise Men followed a star. Your first cries were heard in the shadows. To see your face, Mary and Joseph needed a candle flame. It was dark. Dark with Herod's jealousy. Dark with Roman oppression. Dark with poverty. Dark with violence.

Herod went on a rampage, killing babies. Joseph took you and your mom into Egypt. You were an immigrant before you were a Nazarene.

Oh, Lord Jesus, you entered the dark world of your day. Won't you enter ours? We are weary of bloodshed. We, like the wise men, are looking for a star. We, like the shepherds, are kneeling at a manger.

This Christmas, we ask you, heal us, help us, be born anew in us.

Your Children

Written by Max Lucado
In response to the Newtown Conn. shooting

Friday, November 30, 2012

Thirty Days of Thankfulness Day 30

It's hard to believe that tomorrow is December 1st. It was just yesterday that I was talking about Halloween candy with my neighbor. Where did October and November go? Life is moving quickly. A little too quickly.

I am thankful for sooo much. Twenty six letters didn't even touch the surface.

I am thankful that we only have two children because HOMEWORK is killing me. I know that I shouldn't complain. "Do all things without complaining" but it will be the death of me one morning. I love how it brings the worst out of Curtis and I.

I was thinking about it. God did not give me a big brain. But He did give me patience.

God gave Curtis a brain the size of Texas. But fell short in the patience department.

I am thankful that we balance each other out!

I hope you enjoyed this month's posts. I also hope that it helped you count your blessings.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Thirty Days of Thankfulness in Review

A is for Almight God
B is for Boys
C is for Curtis
D is for Defeat (ALS)
E is for Email
I is for Infant/Income
J is for Jeannette
K is for Kitties
L is for Laughter
M is for Music
N is for Naps/Nap Time
O is for O'Connell (family)
P is for Parents
Q is for Queen (sized bed)
R is for Read
S is for Siblings
T is for Talent
U is for Understand/Understanding
V is for Vehicles
W is for Water
X is for X-rays (Mammography etc)
Y is for Youth Group/Leaders
Z is for Zebras, Zucchini, Zippers and Zinnias.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Thankfulness Day 28

Again, I struggled with this so here you have it...

I am thankful for Zebras (a really unique animal)

Zippers (a fun thing to pull up and down when you are standing in a long line, plus it makes a cool sound)

and Zucchini (as a vegetable or a bread).

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thankfulness Day 27

I am thankful for the YOUTH group and the YOUTH leaders.

It's funny how things work out. I prayed that Amanda would connect with someone at youth group. I prayed for two years. Then one night, she was invited to a youth group at another church. Immediately she connected with the girls and Emily (Em), her leader.

It's now a year later and she has developed such wonderful friendships that I can't even imagine not having if God had answered those prayers the way I wanted.

Amanda stayed "by herself" for the first time this past weekend when we were in Lancaster for the soccer tournament. She wasn't alone however, Em agreed to say here with her. What a selfless act for Em to give up her free time to spend with Amanda. 

We are very blessed to have a wonderful church family!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thankfulness Day 26

Today I am thankful for X-rays


mammography, MRI and anything technical that helps in the diagnosis of cancer. It helps in the diagnosis of many things but finding the cure for cancer is very near and dear to my heart!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thankfulness Day 25

Today and everyday, I am thankful for WATER.

I enjoy watching The 700 Club each day while the baby naps. It is on from 9 am to 11 am. I usually catch the entire thing. 

Watch this and you will never think of water the same way. Actually do you think of it? We have indoor plumbing. We have clean water. We have heated water. I mean, it's just crazy to hear the stories of how people are drinking from the same river where the animals are standing in. 

I am thankful for WATER in every capacity!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Consider this!

I am thankful for the small business in my community!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

“[Thanksgiving] I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every way—with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge—” 1 Corinthians 1:4-5 NIV

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thankfulness Day 21

This letter took some time and thought. The first thing that came to mind was "underwear". LOL. Curtis said he was thankful for that. Yes. I can't live without a bra!

Anyway. I am not going with underwear. I have selected UNDERSTANDING/UNDERSTAND.

I am thankful for the Holy Spirit allowing me to understand the written Word. It is only through God's Spirit that we can do this.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Day 20 of Thankfulness

T is my letter AND it is in my favorite color pink!

T is for TALENT. I am thankful for the talent that my children have been blessed with. 

Amanda is my inner child. She is the kind of kid that I always wanted to be. She makes friends very easily. She is beautiful, blonde and has straight hair. She can play the piano by ear and sings like an angel (or so we have been told). And let's not forget her ability to dance. When I dance, I am sure I look like Seinfeld's Elaine. Amanda has always been able to bust a move. She has been taking professional Irish dance lessons for nine years.

Daniel does all things classified as "athletics" with ease. He has been playing baseball for three years. Last September, he thought he would try soccer and guess what? He excelled. He can golf and bowls like a professional. He made us all look bad this past weekend when we were in Lancaster for a soccer tournament. Our night time activity was bowling. Daniel had so many strikes that we lost count!

Curtis and I like to brag about our children. I think it is more like "can you believe that these two are products of us?!" Ha ha ha.

I am thankful that God has blessed me with two amazingly talented children.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Thankfulness - Day 19


On Day 10, I posted that I was thankful for JEANNETTE, my sister. 

But I have another sibling, Michael.

Michael is two years older. Jeannette is two years younger. That makes me the middle child. (Oh now you are thinking that it all makes sense knowing my birth order). Ha ha, very funny.

We have had our normal sibling issues but nothing every lasted long. We have had our disagreements and difference of opinions but we always put our feelings aside because LOVE always wins.

Jeannette, well you know about Jeannette. She is just the hardest working person that you will ever meet. She worked full time at the day care, took care of her family AND went to school at night to get her RN.

Michael is just like my dad, a hard working family man. His wife and sons are everything to him. He would do anything for anyone. He would give the shirt off his back if you asked for it.

He is the son that makes a parent proud.

These two people live not too far away (35 miles) but with our jobs and children and activities, we are prevented from getting together. We see each other every few months but you better believe that if I put something on here that sounds questionable, Michael is on the phone calling me to see if I am OK.


I am thankful that God gave me TWO Siblings and that they are these two!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Thankfulness - Day 18

I am thankful that I can READ. In some countries you are known as a rich person if you can read. And if you own a book, well look out!

Did you know that? Did you even think about that? I am trying to choose things that you and I don't normal think about on a daily basis to be thankful for.

The obvious things that we are always thankful for are our families, friends, food, house, car. That kind of stuff. Oh don't get me wrong. I am very thankful for all of that. I am blessed.

But I can READ. It's something to truly be thankful for!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thankfulness - Day 17

I am thankful for my QUEEN SIZED BED. What? I am. Is that shallow? Do you have something better?


Friday, November 16, 2012

Thankfulness - Day 16


I was born in to a loving family with a mother and father. 

I had a wonderful childhood. I guess it could almost be called picture perfect. Mom stayed at home with the three of us. Dad worked hard at a blue collar job, working overtime many nights. We had dinners around the table together daily. We went to church on Sundays. We had family vacations.

Mom and Dad scrimped and saved and put all three of us through college without loans. They bought us all our first cars. They helped any way they could. 

We never new struggle.

I am who I am because of my Parents.

I find myself parenting my own children very much in the way that I was. Doing the same things. Saying the same things.

I am thankful that God chose John and Bertie Flynn to be my parents.