Aug 31, 2009
HE is the I AM.
He is able, mighty, awesome, amazing, wonderful, beautiful, holy, creator, sustainer, redeemer, healer, Father and Designer of Brains.
PLEASE continue to intercede in faith filled prayer for a miracle for Andrew.
Aug 30, 2009
This is the Word God gave me the morning of the day we took Andrew to the ER. At first I only got the words "triumphal procession." I was in the shower and began saying "triumphal procession." I said it over a few times until more bits of the scripture came to my memory. As soon as I could, I looked up the rest of the verse and read the 2nd part "...and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him."
It is late Sunday night and I am home for a few hours to shower, be with my other children and sleep for a few hours. My husband is with Andrew tonight and I will rejoin them before morning breaks. Last night Andrew rested well and we expect the same for him tonight.
He had an EEG to check his brain function. I joked with him that I am expecting all to be well and if they tell me they detected he does not like to do his schoolwork, that will not surprise me. That got me a little smile!
One of his neurologist met with us today and is expecting to have the pathology report back tomorrow. Although we don't know what tomorrow holds, we know God is already in our tomorrow. He will lead us in "triumphal procession."
Tonight for a while I stretched out on Andrew's unmade bed and read Psalms 27. I interceded for my boy and I prayed for the doctors and nurses who have cared for him and shown us kindness. I prayed for Dr. Rodriguez, Dr. Cary, Devin, Heather, Roxie, Michelle, Jeff, B.B. and Dr. Keene and others whose faces I remember if not their names.
I heard yesterday that there is another Andrew, a couple of years younger than mine, who was in the room of the ICU next to us. He has a similar situation. And his mother's name is Melanie.
If any of you remember my post on DOUBLE, this will seem utterly providential. I am asking that when my Andrew's name is called in prayer, God will extend that prayer to this other Andrew. That will be a DOUBLE miracle! They were moved to another room before I had a chance to meet the other Melanie. I am praying that God will allow me to meet her and pray with her for her Andrew. So Amazing.
One morning these words were my worship song:
He is in the middle of the storm, in the middle, in the middle
He is in the middle of the storm, in the middle, in the middle
When I reached out my hand, Yours was already in mine.
When lifted up my cry, Your ear was already inclined.
You are in the middle of the storm, in the middle of the storm,
In the middle, in the middle, in the middle
Of the storm.
No matter what storm you may be facing, worship Him and offer Him a sacrifice of praise
for He is always worthy, always Holy.
He is I AM.
Thank you to those who are standing in the gap and on the wall.
Thank you to those who have chosen Scripture that has ministered to me.
Thank you to those who have had Sunday School classes and Bible study groups pray for Andrew and us.
Thank you to those whose children are praying, too!
Thank you to those who have awakened in the night and heeded the Spirit's call to pray for Andrew.
Thank you to those who have told me you, too, have walked a similar road.
Thank you to those who have simply said, "praying."
Thank you to those who have agreed with our petitions in prayer.
How can I express my heartfelt emotion? The Body of Christ is beautiful because it reflects the beauty of Jesus.
"One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple."
Aug 29, 2009
I have nothing but my words reflecting my heart to convey to all of you how blessed and encouraged, how lifted up, how humbled we are that so many of you are standing in the gap for us. Your intercession is a mirror of the intercession of the Holy Spirit and Christ Himself.
God gave me a song this morning. When I have more time later I will share the words with you.
Dear ones, know that God is a faithful, trustworthy Father. He is worthy of praise and worship all the time. He deserves nothing less than our highest praise even when that praise is offered as a sacrifice of praise. He is a rock in a weary land. He is the I AM. He is our shelter. We can safely hide in Him.
Even in the midst of a pyschotic episode which Andrew suffered through for hours Thursday night, God was worthy of our worship. He is worthy, worthy, worthy. He is Holy, Holy, Holy.
Thank you and BLESS you for your intercession.
We are moving to another room out of the ICU shortly.
I want to share more of God's Goodness with you. If I am able I will post later tonight. Andrew has been resting most of the day. No hallucinations, no double vision. Praise God!
Aug 28, 2009
Jesus! Andrew needs you!
Aug 27, 2009
Sisters, Let me try to express how your kind words, references to scripture and prayers have been the balm of Gilead to my heavy heart. Truly, the Body of Christ is beautiful.
Since our world tilted Tuesday, the past 2 nights have been especially difficult. Hard to fall asleep, hard to stay asleep. And the thing is I don't want to sleep. I want to keep the Word before my eyes. I want to ingest it and so I meditate on scripture when my eyes close. When sleep leaves and the morning is not yet, I turn on my lamp and weep before the Healer. I read His Word, I pray and I groan through the Holy Spirit's intercession. I believe that Jesus has entered into this with me. He is interceding before the Father. Around 5:00 this morning I asked my husband to read Psalm 27 over me.
"I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord" Psalm 27:13, 14.
Thank you to all who sent people here. Thank you for adding our sweet Andrew to prayer chains. I pray that as you enter into the "secret place" of prayer, our Father rewards you openly.
We are praying and believing that the mass - the intruder that has no legal right to be in Andrew's body - shrinks to nothingness. We are praying and believing that Andrew regains complete and perfect use of his left arm and hand.
Aug 25, 2009
We could not get an appointment with a neurologist at All Chidren's Hospital (St. Pete) until Monday at 1:00. They will do another MRI and a nerve conduction test.
"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken, struck down, but not destroyed~always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may manifested in our body" 2nd Corinthians 4:7-10.
EDITED TO ADD:
You have no idea how much your words of comfort, scripture and prayer means to me. I tremble at the thought of what all we will hear today after further tests. Truly the Body of Christ ministers light in the darkness.
We had the kind of news you hope you'll never hear today. Our 12 yr. old son had an MRI today that shows a mass on his brain. We take him tomorrow to a children's hospital for more tests.
Please pray for our son, Andrew. His picture is in my sidebar at the bottom. (Skate-Boy)
Thank you so much.
Aug 22, 2009
Would you please help me out with my research by answering the following question?
Aug 20, 2009
Would you like to know how you can help your husband win at life, love and lunch?
There are 4 simple steps you can begin TODAY that will give your husband the winning edge.
The issues of life and love are obvious but, what you ask, does lunch have to do with anything?
Lunch refers to your husband’s job. Often in business, more is accomplished over a lunch or dinner meeting, than in a memo, fax or phone call.
Besides, I like alliteration, so lunch it is!
So what’s the secret to your husband’s success? You are!
Recently I was reading through Proverbs 31, starting with verse 10: “Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies.”
Yes, I am quite familiar with that verse as it is often the theme of events from Mother’s Day to Ladies’ Luncheons.
However, it is verse 11 that leapt off the page and smacked me in the head: “The heart of her husband safely trusts her; So he will have no lack of gain.”
I carefully read it over and again. Yea, I even meditated upon it.
As a wife who loves my husband, I certainly want him to lack nothing and gain all God has available for him. And apparently I have a huge part to play in that plan unfolding.
As I pondered the truth of verse 11, the “4 S’s to Success” began to formulate.
S #1 Sex According to research by Shaunti Feldhahn, author of For Women Only What You Need to Know about the Inner Lives of Men, "Your sexual desire for your husband profoundly affects his sense of well-being and confidence in all areas of his life."
I would like to add that from my own research and yes, personal experience, a wife needs to feel emotonally connected to her husband in order to get in the mood for sex, while a husband needs to have sex with his wife in order to feel emotionally connected. Ah...and there's the rub.
For more information regarding the fascinating & very eye-opening survey that Feldhahn based her book upon, you can go here and register for free access to lots of juicy information. Juicy in a totally good way.
S#2 Shhhhh…Keep his confidences.
This means that those things that my husband confides in me are meant for me and me only. He is more likely to open up about his “stuff” if he knows that I will not share it with anyone else.
S#3 Sis Boom Bah! Be his number #1 fan.
Since you married him, he must be exploding with good qualities. Why not remind him of them from time to time? You’ll build his confidence and make him glad he chose you!
S#4 Support him in being his best in a “no nag” kind of way.
“Support” means to hold up or add strength to. You don’t need a definition of “nag.”
We wives know full well what that means. We can do it with our eyes closed and one hand behind our back! If your current way of supporting your husband is not working, pray about a strategy that will work. A humble prayer for a Holy plan is an answered prayer.
When your husband feels safe with you, his chances of success skyrocket! Even when the issues of “life, love and lunch” don’t go according to his plan, he’ll still feel like a winner with a wife like you!
And that’s a win~win situation.
Aug 19, 2009
In some ways it has been a very tough year for us. In fact, the tough started last November and has continued right on to August 19, 2009.
Aug 18, 2009
Aug 17, 2009
Aug 14, 2009
Aug 13, 2009
In her 90’s, and legally blind, Mamie Parker Williams, Mamaw Williams to me, became an honorary member of her community's volunteer fire department. Still independent and living alone she grabbed her backyard garden hose to extinguish a fire in her shed. A neighbor called the fire department and they took over in putting out the fire.
Mamaw made the paper that week!
But long before Mamie wielded the water hose, she was wielding the Word. As a young woman Mamie accepted the call to ministry. Mamie taught Sunday School, played the organ and prayed with people. In her book, My Journey Home, she wrote, “I was always interested in missions and orphans. I taught my class with an emphasis on these two ministries as well. Often we would raise money to send to the church headquarters for missionaries and the orphanage.”
Her words are recorded in a national church publication, dated June 5, 1920, “My heart’s desire is to be a true and shining light for my Savior and lead lost souls to Him. I realize that the coming of Christ will not be long and Oh! How my heart aches for those that are lost. I want the power of God so that I can tell the lost world more about our precious Savior.”
Mamie meets the General.
In 1923 Mamie met a young preacher, General Grant Williams (his real name). A couple of years prior to their meeting, he was arrested in 1921 for disturbing the peace while preaching on a front porch. A friend, knowledgeable in the law, advised him to plead guilty to the charge. Papaw pled guilty and the judge ordered the general to pay a small fine.
Realizing that he did not have the money and would have to go to jail, the judge passed around a hat in the courtroom to collect the money for the fine!
Mamie and Grant got married and spent the rest of their lives together in ministry.I remember well the summer vacations and Christmas visits when all of the family members who had gathered to visit in Mamaw’s and Papaw’s living room would kneel in prayer. Mamaw was always the most vocal, her voice rising above the rest.She prayed. She cried. She laughed.
Mamaw knew how to pray through.
At the age of 103, she went to meet the one "for whom her passion burned."
Yes, Mamaw was a firefighter. She fanned the fire of desire in my life for Jesus.
It was an occupational hazard.
Aug 11, 2009
Job loss. Job find. Traumatic accident. Drastic paycut blamed on the economy. Waiting. Schooling issues. More waiting.
So many of you could post your own list of challenges that you have been facing as well.
But in the current of uncertainty I have to remember what I truly believe: Challenges are opportunities for growth.
I like this quote by John Maxwell:
Change is inevitable; growth is optional.
In the midst of our challenges, will we look to see how the strain will ultimately be of benefit? Are we on the lookout for new buds of growth?
I've spent my early mornings reading from My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers. This excerpt from August 2nd has had a profound effect on me.
Chambers writes, "God does not give us overcoming life: He gives us life as we overcome. The strain is the strength. If there is no strain, there is no strength."
When I read that quote, I consider the other activity I have been doing daily. A few months ago, I began working out using The 30 Day Shred dvd. In 3 different circuits of the workout I do resistance moves. Sometimes the resistance is my body weight and other moves incorporate 5 lb weights. I can see muscles! I have more tone.
I am stronger.
In the strain of resistance I have developed strength. It is not an invisible, intangible strength. With the increase in strength there is a noticeable ease of stooping and rising, in carrying loads and in my level of endurance.
Psalm 29:11 tells us, "The Lord will give strength to His people; The Lord will bless His people with peace."
I consider that God allows certain trials, certain challenges, into our lives as a means of strengthening us. Perhaps the strength we acheive in the strain comes from resisting the temptation to simply quit. To give up on pushing through the pressure of the weight is to give up on what is sure to be the result ~ growth.
As I push my body up from the floor in the strain of push-ups, and as I follow the trainer's instructions for pressing the 5 lb weights, the goal is not to go about my day doing push-ups nor is it to carry around 10 extra pounds.
No, the goal is to strengthen me to do real life.
James 1:2-4 instructs us thusly, "My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing."
You see, the purpose of my workouts is not so I can do push-ups and lift weights. The purpose of my workouts is so that I am made stronger and healthier for life beyond my workouts.
When James writes that we may be perfect and complete, perfect carries the idea of being fully developed or mature. Complete underscores the thought of fullness and wholeness.
To count it all joy is not a giddy, emotional reaction rather it is a deliberate appraisal to see the strain from God's perspective.
The strain, the trial, the challenge results in the strength.
"The strain is the strength."
Aug 9, 2009
Here's the rundown on my not so new "new" outfit.
Skirt - Ann Taylor (new last year and, as always, on sale)
White Cami - Target last year (camis are a staple)
Blue Top - Shopped my Daughter's closet (came from the Gap)
Vintage Brooch (belonged to my MIL)
Shoes - favorite open styled, "nude" heels. These shoes are old but I treat them well and they return the favor.
I have a pair of white wedge sandals with a strap that would have worked with this outfit, but when I want to make my legs appear longer I wear a pair of heels that virtually disappear. Try it at home, you'll see what I mean. My daughter, whose legs are much longer and thinner than mine, looks great with ankle straps. In fact when she tries on my slingbacks they do not look nearly as cute on her. This is because she got her grandmother's very slender calves and slingbacks make her legs look like matchsticks. On the other hand, or leg, ankle straps make my legs look like cigars. And stubby cigar legs is not my idea of cute.
My best neckline is a Vee. I'm kind of busty so a classic crew neck is baaaaad on me.
You can see that the open expanse of neck gives me breathing room and that's a good thing.
Do you know what your best neckline is? Crewneck, bateau, Vee, scoop, square? Not sure?
For a very good resource for deciding which is your best neckline, click HERE.
Upclose and personal shot of shoes..See how the color and style kind of fade into the leg. This visually lengthens the leg.
And just so you can see the entire "shop my closet" outfit, rest your right ear on your shoulder and view the video. Can't do that? Sorry...I don't know how to fix it! And my 12 year old son got roped into helping Mom get these pictures taken for "Shop Your Closet." See our little pup in the corner. He posed for you. Notice his legs are crossed. We love him and he returns the favor.
Aug 6, 2009
Last year I submitted an article to Proverbs 31 Ministries. It was published online for August! Check it out here.
To celebrate The Summer of My Blueberry Cobbler being published by P31, I'll be posting ideas to help you dress the figure you have on the way to the one you want!
I'll share get healthy tips as well as some "dress your best" ideas! It'll be fun and fashionable all at the same time!
( photo: Spikus_V from photobucket)
Aug 5, 2009
Aug 3, 2009
Last week I made a "closet confesison." This is my "new" outfit I wore to church yesterday. All of it came from my closet and none of it was new but I had never worn these pieces together. And that's what made it "new." The cami is really old...maybe 6 years old. The skirt is one I bought on clearance last fall (under $12), the tied top is the newest piece that I bought in the spring ~ so technically maybe that is "new." The necklace is a mother's day gift from '08 or was it a bday gift? I have earrings to match but you can't see them since I cropped my head out. I had a weird expression on my face, no doubt due to the Florida humidity!
Close-up of the platform slingbacks...some of my favorite shoes (at least 5 years old) because the platform makes the high heel comfortable and again...slingbacks visually elongate the leg.
Last week was One Fine Man's and my anniversary. We went out for seafood and then came home and walked our dog and our neighbor's. Romantic, I know. But it really was because we were together with another couple in love.
These two doggies adore one another. Ours is the pekingese, Ted. Reese is his girlfriend. See how our little dog gazes so adoringly at his big boned girlfriend? And notice how Reese is blinded from basking in Ted's love?