Saturday, November 29, 2008

Women of Faith

Hannah and Alyson (a friend in the speech path. program at U. Tulsa) invited myself and Alyson's mom to attend WOF with them in Oklahoma City earlier in Nov. We met up on Thurs. evening and enjoyed a visit in a hotel about 15 min. from the Ford Center. Friday from 9-3:30 we attended the pre-conference. The whole theme was "I Second That Emotion". Patsy Clairmont was one of the speakers along with Anita Renfroe. You may have seen Anita sing on you tube about what moms say each day, to the tune of William Tell Overture. Anita had the funniest video while she sang. It was about thinking before you eat. It was hilarious. Hannah and I both had wished we had Alison with us. She loves to laugh so much.

The main thought i brought home was the idea that we have an emotion that is usually our default emotion. We pull it out in most situations we are in. It was very introspective. This emotions is what colors our glasses as we look at situations and since emotions can't be trusted, deception may come in. The importance of staying in the Word and seeking out wise counsel was suggested. We laughed and cried quite a bit. There was a portion that we were encouraged to think about and even thank the women we have been taught by, mentored by, encouraged as we journey this time on earth. My mom was of course my first thought but then many women in College Station came to mind. I cried, of course, but they were good tears. I know God puts them in a bottle. Ps. 56:8.

Sandi Patti and Nicole C. Mullins were both there to sing. They are both very different singers but I loved them as they presented their talent from God. If you have the opportunity to attend the Women of Faith Conferences, I suggest taking the time and go with a friend. Thank you, Penny Jackson and Kathy Holt for introducing this conference to me and encouraging me to attend all those years ago. Peace.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

1st Thanksgiving in Abilene

We are immensely thankful! Abundantly thankful! Blessed! Today Cathie, Hannah, and I hosted 15 friends from Abilene, College Station, Dallas, Lubbock, Orlando, and Madagascar. We had great fellowship and fun. Shortly afterwards, Hannah and Jason began their 5 hour trip to Dexter, NM, to spend a couple of days with Jason's family. Tonight, Steve Smith (t-sip) is coming over to watch the Aggie-Longhorn game.

Just before dark, Cathie and I put up our star that her dad, Sam, made for the girls 21 years ago. Enjoy the pics.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Always a new book

When we lived in CS I loved going to the Hard Back Coffee Cafe at Hastings. This was the place of many evenings with aggie girls. (Shanna French, Nicole Oberle, Haley Edmiston, Hillary Cunningham....) What good memories I have!!! Here in "A" town the Hard Back Coffee Cafe at Hastings in on the other side of town and so we had never ventured into it. As Daniel and I were on the road doing errands last week, I ask if we could go in and get coffee, mainly to just remember my times. Yes, I do miss CS!! I miss my connections with all of the great people!! As we entered through the first double doors there were books on rolling shelves on both sides of the wall. The sign said 5 Books for $5.00. Of course, I could not pass this opportunity up. Would I find all 5 or would I have to let Daniel get a few for himself. As we left that evening our receipt said we had saved something like $136.45!!! Wow, doesn't that make you feel good!! We did get 5 books that night.

A Little Pot of Oil, Jill Briscoe, was one of my choices. All 86 pages are refreshing. Very practical and brings you to II Kings 4:1-7 about the widow and the prophet. The main theme is running out of the will to run on.

The titles of the chapters are:
1. The Holy Who? "Getting to Know the One who Fills our Emptiness"
2. Poured out and Filled Up "The Story of the Little Pot of Oil"
3. The Pot of All "Secrets of Filled-Up living"
There is an introduction entitled Hope for When You're Running Low. Check it out. Great book for $1.00.

And oh, I didn't get coffee. I got too distracted!!

What do you know about this book??? Let me know! Eat This Book, Eugene Peterson

Friday, November 14, 2008

Scripture Writers

Just a few pics from our Scripture Writing morning, November 8, 2008.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Grove

Last night we were invited to hear the events of the last 10 months in the lives of Lara Jane and Marshall Coffey. For those of you who remember the Bridgwater family - Lara Jane is number 3 of the 5 girls. They have been planting a church in Waco. As I talked with Lara Jane before the presentation she explained how her two yr. old was praying in a relational way so much faster and deeper than the others did and how she looks back through the rear view mirror and watches her little ones praise God with arms up and eyes closed. Their family is growing through the experience of meeting others and teaching Jesus. They are finding themselves choosing to make friends with the unchurched and working through all that involves. Living very intentional and depending on God for all of the resources needed to walk this journey. They are planning events that would connect them with other families and then making some follow-up. While on this path they see God's finger and timing that looks quite different than what they would plan. As i heard Marshall describe this life, i wondered, isn't this the way we are all suppose to live? It was a challenge to me and a time of questioning. How have I handled my time as I have moved to Abilene? If I want to see God work in my life, I must be a risk taker for Him. There were times in the presentation I could feel tears coming but i suppressed them, and I have had to wonder what was that feeling? Am I touched in how God can and does change lives. Yes. Do I feel I am making the most of the opportunity that God has given me in a new town? Not sure. Am I impatient with myself or with a plan from God? I feel each day I meet people, and events come that i didn't expect but are open to and I ask what was I suppose to learn, or to enjoy as a blessing? I turned to the book, Prayer by Richard Foster I looked at the table of contents and wondered, questioned where am I, what chapter would I best benefit from? I chose the chapter entitled, The Prayer of Examen. After only a few pages I knew I had picked the perfect one.
Psalms 139:1, "Yahweh, you examine me and know me."
I Chronicles 28:9, "The Lord searches every mind, and understands every plan and thought.
I Corinthians 2:10, "the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God"

Richard Foster took me into two different ways to examen.
1. Examen of consciousness - the discovery of God's presence in my day and how I respond to Him.
2. Examen of conscience - the uncovering the areas that need to be cleansed and purified and healed.

The first was what I experienced as I went to the presentation last night. God's power of changing lives was part of what I heard and I responded with suppressed tears and smiles. I was excited to hear what I know but need to be reminded of.

The second is what I began to do as I left and still am doing. I want God to walk with me as I search and I allow Him to search my heart. Foster reminds us that God will show us what we need to see when we need to see it. Yes, this part can be painful but as we remind ourselves of the presence of God's love in our lives we will be glad to have this "purifying fire and welcome it's cleansing."

Check the blog out and support them if you are able. Check out Richard Foster and his book, Prayer. Let God in your mind and heart and let Him help you search your heart. Peace.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Eternal Threads

God opens all kinds of avenues for each of us. Ladies Chapel on Thurs. 11:00am is one of the opportunities I have each week. This is a chapel that is student led and we meet in the bride's room in the Bible bldg. for about 30 minutes. It is a great time for all. We sing and pray together and then we enjoy whatever the Lord brings to us each week as a way of encouragement. Last Thurs. the speaker we had was Linda Egle from Eternal Threads.This ministry is dedicated to improving the lives of women in poverty by giving them work, marketing their handmade goods and returning the profits to their communities. Linda spoke to us about how God opened up this ministry to her and how He has blessed them with a new warehouse location here in Abilene, 101 Walnut St. It is on the corner of Walnut and N. 1st. They need volunteers daily. I was going to see if the ladies at the A&M church of Christ would champion a date of viewing the goods and then i opened up my inbox and saw that the AFC girls were already on top of things. I'm so excited to know that Eternal Threads has made it down to College Station. All you Aggies out there go and support Eternal Threads. It's exciting.

Thursday night, November 13th, 7pm in the A&M church of Christ parlor.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Clean Up

Ok, so this part is not really that fun, except that Cathie and I spend a lot of time together moaning, groaning, grunting, aching, and being sore. I think we have spent close to 10 hours each at the construction site picking up trash and scrap building materials only to return a few days later to do it again. Yes, we are bonding. Yes, we are glad to be spending this much time together. But, whistling while we work? Not hardly. We do laugh alot as we kick up dirt and dust and pile lumber and trash into a trailer to haul down to the dumpster. Oh, they are moving right along with the building. Here you see both tubs, the electrical wiring and recessed lights, and other plumbing almost complete. On Tuesday, Nov 4, they will pour our driveway and sidewalk. We have been given a short respite by our builder and dont have to cleanup the rest of this week! WHOOP! Enjoy the pics.