Sunday, May 29, 2011

Speaking Blessings

On the way to church this morning, I was listening to The Brian Mason show. Brian was interviewing Michael W. Smith about his new CD, book, etc. When asked about his new book, he said that it was a collection of blessings. He told the story of being on a boat with several teens and speaking a blessing into their lives. Over 1,000 copies of this blessing were made & distributed to those involved. He made the comment that people rarely have blessings spoken over them. Most of the time it is discouragement, curses, name calling, or anything else negative.

Then at church, I began speaking to our piano player, Sam, who is by all accounts, awesome. He asked me if I played an instrument to which I said, "Uhhh...I played the flute once upon a time, but quit because of my band director." But I went on and told him about my amazing choral teacher, Mrs. Riggs, who ended up being one of the most influential people/educators in my life.

The moral of this story? Anytime that you are in the position of leadership or any semblance of "power", YOU have the opportunity to speak BLESSING into someone's life! Proverbs 18:21 says, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue..." You can either build someone up or tear them down. If someone continuously tears you down, it does not mean that you should return the "favor". Be different. Be better. Be a blessing into someone's life.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Leave it up to God

Today as I left the office and approached the interstate, I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. A woman and a young girl were standing on the sidewalk in front of a hotel, and it appeared that they had been dropped off there. The woman hoisted a trash bag over her shoulder, picked up an oversized, and considerably full, purple duffel bag, and all I can assume is that they began to walk up the hill.

That was all I had a chance to see before the curve of the road took them out of my sight. As I drove on towards home, my heart broke into a million pieces. I wasn't able to turn around at that point to really do anything about it. And by the time I fought through traffic to get back there, they would've been gone.

So, would you pray with me for them tonight? I don't know their circumstances...their story...but God does.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Christmas Guest

The Christmas Guest
by: Helen Steiner Rice

It happened one day near December’s end
Two neighbors called on an old-time friend
And they found his shop so meager and mean
Made gay with a thousand boughs of green
And Conrad was sitting with face ashine
When he suddenly stopped as he stitched a twine
And he said, “Old friends, at dawn today
When the cock was crowing the night away
The Lord appeared in a dream to me
And said, ‘I am coming your guest to be.’
So I’ve been busy with feet astir
Strewing my shop with branches of fir
The table is spread and the kettle is shined
And over the rafters the holly is twined
And now I will wait for my Lord to appear
And listen closely so I will hear
His step as He nears my humble place
And I open the door and look on His face.”

So his friends went home and left Conrad alone
For this was the happiest day he had known
For long since his family had passed away
And Conrad had spent many a sad Christmas Day
But he knew with the Lord as his Christmas guest
This Christmas would be the dearest and best
So he listened with only joy in his heart
And with every sound he would rise with a start
And look for the Lord to be at his door
Like the vision he had a few hours before
So he ran to the window after hearing a sound
But all that he could see on the snow-covered ground
Was a shabby beggar whose shoes were torn
And all of his clothes were ragged and worn
But Conrad was touched and went to the door
And he said, “Your feet must be frozen and sore
I have some shoes in my shop for you
And a coat that will keep you warmer too.”

So with grateful heart the man went away
But Conrad noticed the time of day
He wondered what made the Lord so late
And how much longer he’d have to wait
When he heard a knock and ran to the door
But it was only a stranger once more
A bent old lady with a shawl of black
With a bundle of kindling piled on her back
She asked for only a place to rest
But that was reserved for Conrad’s Great Guest
But her voice seemed to plead, “Don’t send me away
Let me rest for awhile on Christmas Day.”
So Conrad brewed her a steaming cup
And told her to sit at the table and sup
But after she left he was filled with dismay
For he saw that the hours were slipping away
And the Lord had not come as He said He would
And Conrad felt sure he had misunderstood

When out of the stillness he heard a cry
“Please help me and tell me where am I?”
So again he opened his friendly door
And stood disappointed as twice before
It was only a child who had wandered away
And was lost from her family on Christmas Day
Again Conrad’s heart was heavy and sad
But he knew he should make the little girl glad
So he called her in and wiped her tears
And quieted all her childish fears
Then he led her back to her home once more
But as he entered his own darkened door
He knew that the Lord was not coming today
For the hours of Christmas has passed away
So he went to his room and knelt down to pray
And he said, “Dear Lord, why did You delay?
What kept You from coming to call on me?
For I wanted so much Your face to see.”

When soft in the silence a voice he heard
“Lift up your head for I kept My word
Three times I came to your lowly door
Three times My shadow crossed your floor –

“For I was the beggar with bruised cold feet
I was the woman you gave something to eat
And I was the child on the homeless street
Three times I knocked and three times I came in
And each time I found the warmth of a friend
Of all the gifts, love is the best
I was honored to be your Christmas Guest.”

– Helen Steiner Rice

Monday, November 30, 2009

Pass it on...

The coolest thing just happened to me at Kroger. I went into pick up one of those new Bounce dryer bars, a Bertolli pasta for 2, and some milk. When I went to the aisle and found the Bounce bar, sitting next to it was a manufacture coupon for $2.50 off that someone had placed there. How cool is that? AND THEN...I go to get the pasta, and lo and behold, yet ANOTHER coupon, this time for $2.00 off, was waiting there! I was completely blown away by it!

So, what would've cost me around $20 for the entire trip, wound up being around $13! I now vow to do the same for others!! Why not? We all get coupons all the time for products we may not ever use, but someone else will! And how cool to know that you get to pass on your good fortune to someone else?

Very cool indeed! I hope God blesses the person that left the coupons that I found in a great way!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

To Marathon or not to marathon

Since moving to Nashville, every year around this time the buzz begins to circulate around locals about the Music City (now Country Music) Marathon. And every year, someone asks me if I'm going to participate, to which I quickly respond, "Are you CRAZY?!?"

But this year, I'm thinking I might actually do it. Not the full marathon...but the 1/2 marathon, which is only 13.2 miles. (ONLY...HA!) I'll have to start training, like...yesterday, but I think its possible.

I haven't committed to anything yet, and the early bird discount doesn't end until New Year's Eve.

So be praying for me as I make this decision. Because I believe this is a lifestyle changing decision, not just a fly by night decision. And I might walk for a charity, like the Bridge or something that you might be able to help me support. I need to check that out, but it's a thought.

:) (I must be crazy...)

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Seriously, I just threw things in the pot, so this is all a guesstimate...


1.5 - 2 lbs. of BONELESS Pork Ribs, Country Style
1 large Sweet or Yellow Onion
1 or 2 cups Sweet Baby Rays BBQ Sauce (key ingredient)
1 or 2 cups of Heinz Ketchup
2 tbs. of Honey
2 cloves of garlic (or Two 1/2 tsp. of the stuff in a jar)

Dice the large onion and lay in the bottom of the Crock Pot. Add Boneless Ribs (can be frozen or thawed...I put in frozen ones.) Add the BBQ Sauce & Ketchup and spread it over the ribs, front and back to where there is a nice, thick coat of the sauce. Squirt honey onto the top of the ribs w/ the sauce & ketchup, and spread it around. Add garlic. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours, or until meat is fork tender. Use sauce in bottom of crock pot to spoon over ribs when done! :) (Approx. 4 adult servings)

Enjoy! :) If you decide to use this recipe, let me know how they turn out! So far, my bro-in-law, sister, my parents, and my husband all give it rave reviews!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Saying It Out Loud

I recently finished a brief Bible study by Beth Moore called, "Living Free". (Basically a much quicker version of "Breaking Free".) I learned a lot through it, and I'm planning on reading through it again b/c I feel like I missed a lot. I did get a song idea out of it though!

But the basic premise idea of the study was to dig into the Word, combine it with prayer, and don't let the enemy get a hold on your mind. This is definitely a struggle for me, and for everyone, I am sure.

So, all this to say... I've been working out with a trainer recently, and part of this whole working out thing is obviously to get healthy. My family has a history of heart disease, and I don't want to die from that. But another reason is b/c I know Kyle and I will want to start a family in the next couple of years, and I don't want to be so overweight that I develop gestational diabetes while pregnant. And while I have said that part out loud, Satan began to play a mind game with me. He started putting the idea in my head that if I started working out, dropped the weight that I wanted to drop, then I would have to immediately get pregnant. Which, quite frankly, I'm not ready - we're not ready - to bring kids into the picture. So those thoughts were scary and paralyzing. That one thought kept me from pushing myself in the way I needed to go, and I never shared it with anyone, not even Kyle.
That is, until we were with my parents on the way home from our family reunion a couple weeks ago.

My mom recently received her certification for a job title I don't remember, but she works for a health care company and counsels employees to improve their physical & mental health, etc. etc. So, she's obviously been using me as a sort of guinea pig. :) She was asking me questions about stuff with Dad & Kyle there in the car, and I finally just blurted out what I had been thinking. I prefaced it with, "This is going to sound completely crazy, but this is what I have been thinking." And once I said it out loud, it didn't have as much power over me anymore.

Which brings me back to the Bible study... Beth reminds us that scripture says to take every thought captive for Christ. And I know the more I do this, the harder that Satan is going to try and knock me down. And while I do get discouraged with the whole working out thing (I can barely walk this morning, and sitting down takes a lot longer!!), I know that through Christ, I can do anything!!

Thank you, Lord, that we don't have to be prisoners of our own minds b/c you have SET US FREE!!