Small steps in faith

Sunday, September 30, 2007

He's #1 Quarterback :^)...YEAH!!!!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Nehemiah 12:27-47 "When and How to Party"

These are my notes from the sermon tonight in the book of Nehemiah.
This chapter talks about after the walls of Jerusalem are built and how they celebrated with genuine Godly joy.

Authentic experession of Godward joy will:

1 Treasure purity..It is hard for any of us to celebrate genuine joy if we are in sin
If there is Godward joy needs to start with the leaders. If you are a leader
and you aren't expressing genuine do you expect those who follow you to do
the same? In this passage the priests purified themselves first Psalm 24 talks
about having clean hands and pure heart.
The reason that the gates and walls are purified is because everything is owned by

2 Involve and impact other people's communal.. It's public...No matter what the world tries to tell you...Faith isn't silent..Jesus wasn't silent

3 Produce a humble sensitivity to God's Mercy---We need to learn to give thanks

4 Foster a giving mentality..The MINIMUM standard as a follower of Christ is to be willing to give up your life. We need to give our resources with the mindset My resources are your resources.

5 Focus your Priorities...#1 should be to worship God

"The Kingdom"

Last night Darrell and I went to see "The Kingdom". Anything to do with war,terrorism,etc doesn't necessarily appeal to me but Darrell really wanted to see it.
I can't say it's the best movie I've seen, but it definitely left an impact on me.
I won't tell you why but the beginning of the movie and definitely the last 20 to 25 minutes make it worth watching.
At the end of the movie, it is revealed what Jamie Foxx whispers to Jennifer Garner when she is grieving toward the beginning of the movie and what the head of the terrorist plot whispers to his small granddaughter at the end of the movie....It's the same phrase...and it shows the passion on both sides and it makes you sit back and just say "wow".

Friday, September 28, 2007

Sept 28, 1985

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Take your leg and the smoker and give me my money back!!

This is the most bizarre story!! UGH!!!!

MAIDEN, N.C. - A man who bought a smoker Tuesday at an auction of abandoned items might have thought twice had he looked inside first.

Maiden police said the man opened up the smoker and saw what he thought was a piece of driftwood wrapped in paper. When he unwrapped it, he found a human leg, cut off 2 to 3 inches above the knee.

The smoker had been sold at an auction of items left behind at a storage facility, so investigators contacted the mother and son who had rented the space where the smoker was found.

The mother, Peg Steele, explained her son had his leg amputated after a plane crash and kept the leg following the surgery “for religious reasons” she doesn’t know much about.

“The rest of the family was very much against it,” Steele said.

Steele said her son, John Wood, plans to drive to Maiden, about 35 miles northwest of Charlotte, to reclaim his amputated leg, police said.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What I'm listening to

I bought the new David Crowder CD today.I love it!!....I plan to buy the Steve Fee CD tomorrow...I love the song "Glorious One"and btw...he is a Lee University graduate :^)

Evil turned to good

So many times I know I've asked "Why?" when something bad happens...especially when it just doesn't seem to be fair...or it hurts me or someone else...especially if it comes from hatred or jealousy. I thought the following quote from an article I read was good in remembering this verse

You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result.” (Genesis 50:20 NIV)

"Look for God’s hand – Walking by faith means you see God’s hand even in the most difficult of circumstances. You trust his ability and his willingness to transform the bad into godly good. God is not limited by people’s motives. In other words, it doesn’t matter why someone hurt you, God still can transform a deliberate, mean-spirited situation into something for his good."

Jon Walker

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Brett Favre ties the record for TD passes

Brett.....YOU ROCK!!!!!

Genesis...a great concert

Darrell and I went to see Genesis in Columbus last night. They are one of if not my favorite group. My favorite song of all is "Ripples". They were awesome! It was at the Nationwide Arena which is where the Columbus Blue Jackets play hockey. We were in the lower section (thanks to Darrell getting tickets pre sell through American Express) so we had great seats. They played for 2 1/2 warm up band. They show their age physically but definitely not in their music or energy. They played a variety of song from all of their albums. It was well worth the price we paid !
We also ate at Buca di Bepo's which sits right next to Nationwide. That's a great place to have Italian food but it's their salad that I love the most. They serve their food "family style" so we had the Manicotti and their garlic bread with mozarella.
A great anniversary present :^)!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

We're almost done!!!!!

For the last 30 days we have been painting the outside of our house. Darrell is the painter...I'm the helper/gopher :) Anyway it has been a long project..There have been many days where he has prepped/primed/painted from morning until dark. And now...the only thing left is the garage :) Yeah!! We have been blessed with good weather and we did take a break to go to Boston. Word to the wise...if you have cedar...don't paint it...stain it..that was our first mistake 4 years ago.
So what's the next project? Painting the inside :)

Friday, September 21, 2007

"Remedy" a little clip

The new David Crowder album comes out Tuesday. This clip is part of his new song "Remedy"

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Simple things....natural highs

My friend Aisa sent this to me. Sometimes you need a reminder of good things in your life...sometimes you need to do one of these to make you feel better :) I could identify with all of them...especially #43

1. Falling in love.
2. Laughing so hard your face hurts.
3. A hot shower.
4. No lines at the supermarket.
5. A special glance.
6. Getting mail.
7. Taking a drive on a pretty road.
8. Hearing your favorite song on the radio.
9. Lying in bed listening to the rain outside.
10. Hot towels fresh out of the dryer.
11. Chocolate milkshake (or vanilla or strawberry).
12. A bubble bath.
13. Giggling.
14. The beach.
15. Finding a 20 dollar bill in your coat from last winter.
16. Laughing at yourself..
17. Looking into their eyes and knowing they Love you.
18. Midnight phone calls that last for hours.
19. Running through sprinklers.
20. Laughing for absolutely no reason at all.
21. Having someone tell you that you're beautiful.
22. Laughing at an inside joke with FRIENDS
23. Accidentally overhearing someone say something nice about you.
24. Waking up and realizing you still have a few hours left to
25. Your first kiss (either the very first or with a new partner).
26. Making new friends or spending time with old ones.
27. Playing with a new puppy.
28. Having someone play with your hair.
29. Sweet dreams.
30. Hot chocolate.
31. Road trips with friends.
32. Swinging on swings.
33. Making eye contact with a cute stranger.
34. Making chocolate chip cookies.
35. Having your friends send you homemade cookies.
36. Holding hands with someone you care about.
37. Running into an old friend and realizing that some things (good
or bad) never change.
38. Watching the expression on someone's face as they open a much
desired present from you.
39. Watching the sunrise.
40. Getting out of bed every morning and being grateful for another
beautiful day.
41. Knowing that somebody misses you.
42. Getting a hug from someone you care about deeply.
43. Knowing you've done the right thing, no matter what other
people think.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Priorities Nehemiah 10

I missed this sermon when I was in Boston so I got the CD at the bookstore
These are my notes

Nehemiah 10 Priorities

Setting priorities and sticking with them is a daily fight.
In Old Testament history..God was ignored..he became a "religious motion" and wasn't made a priority.

In Nehemiah 10, He is taking the people through a "phyical therapy" How to walk again

God's people came together and formed a covenant.
We need things in our lives to remind us of our priorities.

Two commitments that help you keep priorities

1 A commitment to a community of interdependence

a. A list of names in Nehemiah show the interdependence...the people who are willing to enter into the covenant. They are all in agreement

b. The same standards of godliness should apply to all of us

c. There is no insignificant part of the body..
we all need each other

we need to be serving one another

we need to be suffering together
this is very rare. It tells us in 1 Corinthians 6:19 not to neglect the "House of God"which is the people of God

"Community means people who have to learn how to care for each other" Eugene Peterson

d. community needs to be pure
We shouldn't "intermarry among countries...when this happened they started worshipping their gods...Solomon is an example of this
In 1st Peter it tells us that if we are married to an "unbeliever", We need to persevere to be an example and influence but it's very difficult.

"2. Commitment to obey God's objective commands
We are to be salt and light..follow scripture
We 're to deny ourselves..take up the cross and follow Christ
His commands aren't burdensome...they are there for our safety.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Psalm 23 ...She's Adorable!!!!

My friend Bona sent this....she is adorable!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Nehemiah 11

If you read this chapter and chapter 12, it looks like alot of names.
Why is that important? It gives you the names of those who are obedient.
Jerusalem was still not the most desirable place to be.
So who are these people who "willingly offered themselves to dwell iat Jerusalem."

The Specs of the Remodeled,Holy City

1 The People who live there desire to be there.
There is a huge difference in duty vs desire. It's something we need to ask ourselves ..Are we eagerly seeking God or are we doing things out of "duty" "To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation." Hebrews 9:28

2 The People who live there have a relational connection to the city.
Alot of who we are is based on our heritage...For some that's a good thing...for others they come from dysfunction...but so did Christ..if we accept Him , we have that relational connection

3 The people who live there have been remodeled...they are changed..from the inside out.

It's the reason Christ died on the cross...

4 The main industry in the city is worship.

God didn't call us to a life of comfort..he called us to a cross bearing life.
It may be that you get clarity after you step out in obedience.

Great song..great movie...

Friday, September 14, 2007

The macaque nestles his head against his feathered friend

I saw this on Relevant....How sweet it that..I want to take them both home

The abandoned monkey who has found love with a pigeon

They're an odd couple in every sense but a monkey and a pigeon have become inseparable at an animal sanctuary in China.

The 12-week-old macaque - who was abandoned by his mother - was close to death when it was rescued on Neilingding Island, in Goangdong Province.

After being taken to an animal hospital his health began to improve but he seemed spiritless - until he developed a friendship with a white pigeon.

The blossoming relationship helped to revive the macaque who has developed a new lease of life, say staff at the sanctuary.

Now the unlikely duo are never far from each other's side, but they aren't the only ones to strike up an unusual friendship.

Earlier this year a pig adopted a tiger cub and raised him along with her piglets because his mother couldn't feed him.

And in 2005 a baby dear named Mi-Lu befriended lurcher Geoffrey at the Knowsley Animal Park in Merseyside after she was rejected by her mother.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Counting Blessings

I found out today that a classmate of my son Zach's died yesterday. Jason DePew had a rare form of cancer and has battled it most of his high school years. He was a fighter...and it was touching to see him accept his diploma this year at graduation, knowing what he had been through.
I can't imagine the pain his parents are going through right now. My heart hurts for them.
It's times like these that I thank God for my children ..that I got a text from my son that just simply said " Hi Mom "...that I got a phone call from my daughter wanting to know how my trip was. Being an "empty nester" also makes me appreciate those messages and calls even more.
Time is precious.

I'm adding a link for a site for Jason

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Fenway Park and home

I put a picture of the scoreboard and "The green monster" from Fenway Park. What a great place to watch a baseball game. There were no empty seats and their fans are totally into the game. They did lose 1 to 0 but it was still a good game.
We left for the airport early ..6am and were there VERY early . There was alot of fog in Boston this morning but our plane only left 20 min later than scheduled. So now comes the fun of unpacking and back to reality of work tomorrow :^(

Monday, September 10, 2007

Harvard/Boston Red Sox

We decided to take the "T" to Cambridge to check out Harvard. It looks very similar to Miami of Oxford. Very old buildings with ivy...students with backpacks/bikes etc. The professors stand out like sore thumbs...they all wear suits...some of the older ones wear bow ties. We are heading to Fenway Park tonight for the Red Sox game...and then early tomorrow's time to head to the airport and back home.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The Duck Tour

We went on something called "Duck Tour" of Boston. I put a picture of what we were was used it WW2 and can be used on land as well as water. Pretty cool..they took us on an hour tour to the various popular spots and historical spots. The other picture I have on here is the guy who sat behind me. His name is Bernie Koppel and he played "Doc" on the show LoveBoat which was popular in the 70's. We also took the "T" or subway to where Fenway Park is. We ate at an authentic Italian restaurant in "Little Italy"
Tomorrow we go to Fenway for a Red Sox game :)

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Today we went on a "3 hour tour" for whalewatching...made me want to sing the Gilligan's Island song :)
Darrell and I were a little skeptical that we would actually see a whale. We thought they might take us to an area where they had a whale penned up or something. We were wrong. They took us about 30 miles into the Atlantic Ocean to a "feeding area" they call The Sanctuary. This is a protected area where whales come between April and October to feed. We saw about a dozen whales. It was hard to take pictures. You never knew when they would surface. The only warning you had was you would see water blow up from their blowholes. We were lucky enough to see 5 of them right beside our boat. It was one of the coolest things I've seen. They will surface and then you'll see their tail come up out of the water.
We went to the aquarium but honestly the Newport Aquarium is much nicer. We ate at the oldest building on the Harbor. It's a seafood restaurant called The ChartHouse.
Their New England choweder was great. We walked down to the outdoor shops where they had "street entertainment"...rappers,dancers,jugglers,etc.
Tomorrow we are going to do something called "The Duck Tour" that takes you into the historic areas of Boston. We may have showers tomorrow so it may really be a duck tour :)

Friday, September 07, 2007

I made it to Boston

I made it to Boston. These are some of the pictures I took this evening. Our hotel sits over the harbor. The top picture is a view from the patio. The second picture is a bridge downtown. The 3rd picture is our hotel.

It's beautiful here!

We walked through the shopping area and ate at "Cheers".."where everybody knows your name :)
We also walked to the North Area which is the Italian neighborhood. It's lined with family owned Italian restaurants and bakeries. The smell is and fresh bread :)

It's very easy to get around here. You either walk or take the subway.
Tomorrow we're going out on a boat for whale watching and then to the aquarium.
There's also a big art festival right beside our hotel this weekend.

So much to do here!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

A Beautiful Song

I finished a book today that ended with a parallel to music. I love music so it just seemed a perfect way to describe how we should be:

"To us it has been given the greatest song in all the universe to sing.
It isn't important we sing it professionally with great polish.
But it is important we sing it passionately, with great heart.
When we come together as Christians, united by our love for God and for our neighbor, that is when we will be in harmony with the melody of the Father's heart. And that is when our lives will become a song so beautiful it will make the entire world stop and listen.

Maybe they won't understand the words. And maybe after hearing them, they will simply return to what they were doing before. Even so, they will sense that what they heard comes from someplace higher and farther than any of them have dared to dream. And for the briefest of moments, the heart of every last person who hears it will ache to be free.
So until Jesus returns, we sing.
In harmony.
And when at last He appears, the most passionate notes we have sung here on earth will seem only the humming of a prelude. And we will discover, some of us maybe for the first time, that the sad and sometimes somber notes of our lives here on earth were in fact the deep, visceral strains of a great, heavenly symphony.
And when we see Jesus, the One whom we have loved only from afar, we will burst into song, tears streaming down our faces, never wanting the song to end, each stanza lifting us higher to fuller expressions of love for Him who sounded the first and most beautiful note that gave us all not only a reason to live....
but to sing."

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Scheduling pauses

I'm reading a book called "Seeing What Is Sacred...Becoming More Spiritually Sensitive to the Everyday Moments of Life"
In the book he puts emphasis on the importance of reflecting ..looking below the surface of "mundane" things for those spiritual moments. Many times we miss them because we pack our days with "stuff" and don't actually take the time needed to look and listen to what's really important.
In the chapter I just finished he compares it to a paragraph in small print with no pauses.

"The pauses give resonance to the words, giving them a place to live in our heart. That is why it's important to schedule pauses into our day. The pauses give resonance to the words we read, whether those words are spoken through a Scripture that comes to mind or through a billboard that blurs by us on the freeway or through a boy at the roller rink.
A busy schedule crowds out those pauses. When life pressures us to put as much as we can into a day, we start reducing the type, combining paragraphs, editing out the spaces, eliminating the margins.
And after a while, we simply stop reading."

iPod cool is that!!

This is a picture of the new ipod coming out....TIME TO UPDATE :^)

The new iPod touch introduced today features built-in Wi-Fi networking and a revolutionary multi-touch user interface—first introduced on iPhone—that makes it easy to find all of your music, video, and other digital content and enjoy it on the gorgeous widescreen display on iPod touch. The multi-touch interface uses pioneering new software to present the perfect user interface for Safari, Apple’s YouTube application, and the new iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store—all of which come with iPod touch. An unbelievable 8mm thin, iPod touch features up to 22 hours of audio playback and up to five hours of video playback. Available later this month, iPod touch comes in 8GB and 16GB models for $299 and $399, respectively.

Monday, September 03, 2007

A Way to Boost Morale...we all need it at some point !

I just finished a small but great book called "Fish" It's a book that deals with how to boost morale in a workplace that has none. It teaches the lessons it has using a fish market in Seattle called "Pike Place Fish Market" At this market they make work fun using 4 main points

1 Choose your attitude...positive or negative

2 is energizing

3 Make Their Day...they include their customers and engage them to make a positive experience for them

4 Be Present....Being there for one another..

I think we all can use a boost in morale sometimes no matter what our job is. This gives us reminders of how to do that.

Here is a quote that I really liked on Meaning:

Meaning is not something you stumble across, like the answer to a riddle or the prize in a treasure hunt. Meaning is something you build into your life. You build it out of your own past, out of your affections and loyalties, out of the experience of humankind as it is passed on to you, out of your own talent and understanding, out of the things you believe in, out of the things and people you love, out of the values for which you are willing to sacrifice something. The ingredients are there. You are the only one who can put them together into that pattern that will be your life. Let it be a life that has dignity and meaning for you. If it does, then the particular balance of success or failure is of less account.

John Gardner

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Nehemiah 9

We're still in Nehemiah...I've enjoyed the history as well as the application Nehemiah has.
The next series is on Origins...creation,evolution,etc. hmmm should be interesting :)

How can we tell if we're serious about being God's people

1 Renewed mourning over sin (v. 1)...I thought it was interesting that sackcloth is a scratchy uncomfortable material to remind them how uncomfortable life is

2 Renewed emphasis on Holy living (v.2)

3 Renewed hunger for God's word (v.3)...This reminded me of my friend, Kyle.

4 Renewed zeal for worship (v.3-5)

Where do I find the fuel for worship?

I found this interesting because I've had some friends who have/are going through "burn-out".

1 Recognize God's supremacy in creation (v.6)... ie. beautiful blue skies, clouds,
butterflies and ducks (right Adam?)

2 Understand the move behind all of God's actions (For His glory)

3 Agree with God's justice in judgment(v33) This can be a tough one We have to accept God's wisdom even in the hard things that we don't understand (death of loved ones)
4 Remember God's continual gracious acts toward sinners...Even when we screw up, God uses us for good