Thursday, July 31, 2008

Foreign Languages

OK, girls. I've been posting up a storm recently. Crazy. Very crazy. Well, I'm back today with a random fact about me. I love to learn foreign languages. I can speak some Spanish, some German, and a very tiny bit of French. Lately, I have had the foreign language itch. I think I want to learn a new language, but I seriously cannot decide what to learn. I am so torn. I mean, I could definitely use a refresher in the languages I've already begun to learn. But, there are so many other languages out there to learn. I've always wanted to learn Italian, and now that I am studying the Bible so much, I would love to learn Hebrew and Greek. So, I don't know. Decisions, decisions, decisions. What I do know, is that I want to use Rosetta Stone software this time around. I've heard it's the best out there. Have any of y'all used it?
So, what do you think? Do you speak another language? If so, what one? If not, what language did you always want to learn? And, what language do you think I should learn? I'm interested in hearing your opinions!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Surprise!!! Pictures!

Alright girls. I got my hair done tonight. Sorry, I didn't take any before pictures. Let's just say I looked kind of like a skunk. But, here are a couple of after pictures. And, I just have to tell you ladies...I HATE getting my picture taken. But, obviously, I LOVE you all more. So here's my new do.

From the back.

From the side.

And, from the front. (And, yes, I have no makeup on. Sorry. With the headaches I've been having, you're lucky I took a shower!)
Nothing too exciting, but at least I don't have roots. So, take a look at the pictures. I can't promise I'll leave them up here very long ;) Well, it's been a LONG day, and I'm going to bed. Talk to you all tomorrow! Tomorrow's Thursday. We're over the hump!! Woo hoo!!


Wow, girls. Two posts in one day. I guess I'm making up for the day I lost in bed yesterday!You'll have to excuse me ladies, but I have to brag on my man for just a minute. Some of you already know that I have a man who bends over backward to help me whenever I need help. He is always happy to help me around the house, and he does nearly half of the cooking. Well, girls, he out did himself last night. I had found a Rachael Ray recipe that looked intriguing, and he made it for dinner last night. Seriously, it was some of the best tasting food I have had. It was really really good!! It was so good, I thought I would share the recipe with ya'll. If you try it, let me know what you think! Ooh, we just might have to make it again soon...

Cuban Spiced Pork with Saffrito Rice

Rice: 1 tablespoon olive oil or vegetable oil 2 slices bacon, chopped 1 small white onion, chopped 1 small green bell pepper, chopped 2 3/4 cups chicken broth 1 1/2 cups white rice 2 pinches saffron or 1/2 teaspoon turmeric Salt

: 2 pork tenderloins, trimmed, about 2 1/2 pounds total weight 4 cloves garlic, cracked away from skin 4 bay leaves 2 teaspoons anise seed 2 teaspoons ground coriander 1 tablespoon ground cumin 2 limes, zested 2 tablespoons grill seasoning blend (recommended: McCormick Montreal Steak Seasoning) or coarse salt and pepper EVOO - Extra-virgin olive oil, or vegetable oil, to coat. Optional garnishes: chopped mango or kiwi, or chopped cilantro and scallions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Heat medium pot with tight fitting lid over medium high heat. Add oil and bacon and brown bacon. Add onions and peppers, saffron and salt, and saute 5 minutes. Bring broth to a boil. Add rice. Cover the pot and reduce heat to simmer. Cook 15 to 18 minutes, until rice is tender.

For pork, cut 4 slits into each loin and nest garlic and bay into meat. Place meat on nonstick baking sheet. Combine the spices. Coat meat with oil. Rub spices over the pork tenderloins and place in oven. Roast meat 25 minutes. Remove from oven. Let juices redistribute, then slice and serve with soffrito rice and garnishes of chopped tropical fruit or chopped cilantro and scallions.

Girls, this meal was seriously divine!! The pork was wonderful, and the rice, oh, all I can say is YUM-O!! Let me know what you think if you try it out!!

Thank You Gals, You're the Best!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, ladies for praying for me! There is no way I could ever express in words how much that means to me. God did lift that cloud of darkness from me on Monday. I was able to go to my Monday night Bible study, and I had a fabulous time there. Immediately after my Bible study ended Monday night, however, I started to get a horrible headache. It was so bad by Tuesday morning that I called in sick to work and went to the doctor. Apparently, on top of my migraines, I am also starting to get cluster headaches. To make a long story short, my doctor put me on four different medications in an attempt to break the cycle of these headaches. The problem is that if the medicine doesn't work, I may have to get nerve blocking injections into the base of my skull. If y'all could pray that the medicine would work, I would appreciate it. I really don't want to get any injections into my head. That sounds really painful. Needless to say, I was in bed all day yesterday. I am up and back to work today, and we'll see how it goes.

But, enough whining out of me. We are studying the book of Ruth in my Monday night Bible study, using Francine River's book Unshaken as a guide. I don't know about you, but as a woman, I love the book of Ruth. I think it has so much to say to women about how God loves us and how He has a place for us in His work. The more I study it, the more I realize that the book of Ruth is so much more than a "love story" between Ruth and Boaz. It is, instead, a love story between God and women. I could go on and on about what I am learning, but I think I'll save that for another post.

What about you? What is your favorite book of the Bible, or favorite Bible story, and why?

PS. I'll have a surprise on here for y'all either tonight or tomorrow. So, you'll have to check back and see what it is. Ha! Suspense. (But, don't get your hopes up too high. It's not that great of a surprise ;)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Would You Please Pray for Me?

Girls, I am sitting in my office this afternoon on the verge of tears. I wish I could pin point something in particular that is wrong, but I cannot. All I can say is that I woke up this morning with a horrible cloud of darkness around me. I really don't even know how to describe it. I am exhausted and horribly sad. My heart is pounding and I am finding it difficult to breathe normally. I kind of feel like there is a heavy weight on my chest, preventing me from getting air. Kind of like someone is holding me under water and I cannot get out from underneath it. And, this entire time, everything I hate about myself is running through my head like one of those running news streams .

I am sorry; I don't mean to scare you or bring you down with me. I don't know what this is, or what brought it on, but I want it GONE. I have been sitting here, reciting verses in my head. In particular, I have been saying these verses from 2 Corinthians over and over again:

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all‑surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:7-9.

If you happen to read this, would you please pray for me. I am so sorry about being a downer, but I really felt I should tell y'all how I feel. Maybe getting it out in the open will help it go away. I love praying for each of you, and I thank you for praying for me.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Random Thoughts on a Gloomy Friday

Thank you ladies for leaving me comments about your cars. I really detest car shopping and am not looking forward to walking around car lots, getting harassed by the sales people. I have no idea what I'm going to get, but I can tell you that despite what "anonymous" has to say, I am under no circumstances, never ever, no way, no how, not on your life, over my dead body, getting a Vespa. Of course, I knew he was joking, which was a very good thing for him. Because, after all, I know where he lives. So, I'll start car shopping, and hopefully by the time my car breaks down on me next time, I will have a new one. In the interim, I need to practice my "Don't Mess With Me, I Know Everything There Is To Know About Cars" face. And, believe me, I need a lot of practice with that one.

So, girls, what do you have planned for the weekend? I'm going to clean, clean, clean. We also need to go to the grocery store before I have a strike on my hands. I would love to go to the farmer's market tomorrow morning. We'll see if we can get up early enough to do that. The highlight of our weekend, though, is probably this:

We're going to Shakespeare on the Lawn at the Salisbury House. They are doing Taming of the Shrew, and I am so excited. We'll bring a picnic dinner and sit outside on the Salisbury House's beautiful grounds. Even W. is excited to go this year. I just pray that the weather will hold out. It's been very rainy and gloomy the past two days, and that has not been good for my head. I was in bed and asleep at 4:30 yesterday afternoon. I have been having terrible migraines recently. YUCK!! Today, I still don't feel like I'm back to myself. So, sorry if this doesn't make any sense. I'm trying, really I am!

Anyway, enough about me. What exciting plans do you have for the weekend?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Break-Up

My dearest G.A.,

It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I sit here writing this letter. I look back at all the great times we've shared over the last few years, and I can scarcely believe it has come to this. I remember what great joy I had the first time I spotted you across that parking lot. If love at first sight exists, I believe that I experienced it with you. You were so handsome, so powerful, so everything I was looking for at that time in my life. Or, at least I thought you were everything I was looking for.

You were my constant companion, never refusing to travel with me, even when I was traveling to boring places. You always did your best to take care of me, keeping me cool in the summer, and warm in bitter Iowa winters, and you never once complained about my singing. I thought your love for me was unconditional. But, G.A., what happened?

Was I blinded by your beauty or by your desire to go flying through life like I did? Did I fail to take care of your needs, too? I really tried hard to make sure you were well fed and were pampered. So, can you tell me why you abandoned me? Why? Just, tell me why? Because I really thought that I was the only one who could get your engine running, so to speak. So, what happened? Why, in the words of the Stones, couldn't I start you up? Well, at least without bribing you.

And, the bribery. Well, the bribery is completely unacceptable. I shouldn't have to pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars to prove that I love you. I know that I have broken this bribery rule in the past, and I have paid money to show you my love. But, that money was for small things, and I thought I was meeting your needs and maintaining your well-being by doing that. But, hundreds and hundreds of dollars, that's different. Especially, when they tell me that you might abandon me again. In just a few short months, even. I am so sorry, but I think I must end this relationship. It is no longer reciprocal love. I'm sorry, but I think I'm going to have to trade you in for a newer model. I will always love you, but I cannot continue to put up with this behavior. Besides, I have my eye on a Buick, and I've heard that Buicks are more reliable than you Grand Ams. I guess they just don't have as high of an opinion of themselves since they aren't as cute. Not that I'm bitter or anything. So, goodbye Grand Am, goodbye.

With much love,

Your soon to be ex-owner

(What about you? What kind of car do you drive? And, do you like it?)

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Beth Weekend Ever

Hello Ladies!! I'm back from my crazy week last weekend, but to be quite honest, I am totally exhausted!! Quite frankly, I'm not used to traveling that much anymore. I think I would have been OK if it had just been one, longer trip. All that driving, and hotel hopping was a little more than these old bones could handle. But, that's enough complaining out of me. I've hooked up a coffee IV, so I'll be alright.

Oh, so you all know that I went to see Beth Moore with a group of girlfriends this past weekend, and let me just tell you, it was as wonderful as I had imagined it would be!!! It was so wonderful to be able to fellowship with some of the women I love the most in this whole world. We did all the things you think we would have done. We ate too much, talked too much, stayed up too late, and laughed and laughed and laughed. And, as I mentioned before, it was my friend Shana's birthday on Friday, and It was so cool to be able to celebrate with her. I just have to tell y'all, I loved these ladies a lot before we left home on Friday, but I love them even more now!!

And, the message? Oh my, girls. Beth's message was amazing. We got a Word!! The title of Beth's message was "Between a Rock and a Hard Place." And, I just have one word for you: Timely. Isn't God amazing that way? The way He can just orchestrate every little detail, allowing Himself to meet each of us exactly where we are. Exactly at the place of our need. He is just too cool!!! I want to blog more about the three areas Beth spoke about, but I'm at work, and my notes are at home. So, I will save that for tomorrow. All I can say is awesome. It was just awesome.

In the interim, there is something I would like to ask of each of you. Sunday night I started making a new set of scripture cards. I'm trying to write down verses that speak to the issues I'm facing in this particular season of my life. I would also like to write down some verses for each of you. That way, I can pray scripture when I pray for you. There is only one, teensy-weensy problem with this plan. I'm not sure what to pray!! So, if you would consider emailing me with one or two of your top prayer requests, I would appreciate it. You know, something I can pray about for the next few months. I would love to pray for you!! So, please shoot me an email! I love you all!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Murphy's Law

Oh, girls...I'm back from my whirlwind trip to the big cities of Council Bluffs and Omaha for work. I got home earlier than I had expected yesterday afternoon. I was happy to be home, but I was exhausted and wanted to go to 4:00 in the afternoon!! Don't laugh. You'd have been tired too if your trip had been a life lesson in Murphy's law. You know, the little adage that "everything that can go wrong will go wrong." I have to tell you. I do not know Murphy, but I can tell you this. I don't like him. Or, his law. So, neener-neener-boo-boo Murphy! (Yes, I'm sure he is very upset at that.) I made it through my trip anyway. Just so you can feel my pain, here's how it all went down.
1. I left my office several hours later than I was supposed to because my client missed his flight. It ended up being OK because the airline, are you ready for this, took responsibility for the problem. They changed the gate but didn't tell my poor client. Even though he had been sitting there for two hours. I couldn't believe the airline took responsibility for the problem. I have NEVER had that happen before. Ever. I know it was nothing short of a miracle.
2. When I finally arrived at my hotel, I was completely dismayed to find several minivans in the parking lot. Minivans bearing colorful writing on all of the windows. Writing that said things like "Go team," "Win state," and "#1." Because, clearly, there is nothing more relaxing than 30 high school kids stampeding up and down the hallway at all hours of the night, banging into your door. Oh, well, except their slightly drunk parents who were doing the same. Fun times, friends. Fun times.
3. I was all by myself which meant that I had to eat by myself. Can I just say, I hate eating by myself? I've done it many times, so you think I would have gotten over it by now, but, no. I haven't. After receiving faulty directions from the lady at the front desk and getting lost, I ended up at Cracker Barrel. So, at least I got to have some good food!!
4. Tuesday night there were terrible thunderstorms that knocked the power (and, therefore, alarm clocks and air conditioner) out. I don't sleep well the first night I'm in a hotel usually, but I really didn't sleep well Tuesday night!!
5. I got ready early so I could have breakfast with my client before the depositions started. And, why is it that no matter how many times I tell my clients, "Whatever you do, don't do______ (fill in the blank)", it is always the first thing they do??? I mean, seriously, I've tried everything but standing on my head, and I guess I'll have to try that next time.../
6. I got a parking ticket during the deposition thanks to some parking meter Nazi. I mean seriously, I was three minutes over my time when I went to plug the meter, and I ALREADY had a ticket.
7. Then I got us lost on the way back to the hotel. One way streets are now the bane of my existence.
8. My drive home was uneventful, PTL. I got home, parked my car and went into the house. When I went to pick up W. an hour later, however, my car wouldn't start. It wouldn't turn over, it wouldn't make any noises. Nothing. So, now I'm without a car. Well, at least temporarily.
So, can I just say I'm happy to be home??? Not that the entire trip was a loss. I got to talk to two of my favorite people on the phone while I was gone!!! I love to talk on the phone, and it was so great to be able to chat with them.
I better get back to work because I'm leaving again tomorrow. Hopefully, this trip will go by much more smoothly!!!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Weekend Update

Hello ladies!!! I hope you each had a wonderful weekend! My weekend was good. If you noticed the time stamp on my last post, you already saw that I stayed up way too late on Friday night. I really must be getting old. I just can't do midnight like I used to. But, Someone was looking out for my well being because the nearly 11 year old slept until 10 AM Saturday morning. And, of course, that meant that I, too, got to sleep in. Heavenly. Absolutely heavenly.

Our Saturday was filled with our usual Saturday routine. We ate brunch, and then we ran some errands. I had to sign W. up for some swimming lessons at the YMCA, and then we went to look for scanners. You will be happy to know that we did buy a scanner at Best Buy. I had no idea what I was looking for, but luckily for us, there was a HP rep at the Best Buy store, and she was very helpful. She walked us through the different HP scanners and answered all of our questions, and we ended up with this all in one thingy (yes, that's a technical term).

I was promised that it would do "everything" I need it to do. Of course, it will also do five hundred things I don't need it to do. Don't get me wrong, I'm not blaming the wonderful HP rep. It really isn't difficult to talk us into things. We seem to live by the philosophy that the more buttons the better. But, bottom line, yes, the hairumentary is forthcoming....Just as soon as I learn to operate it.

Sunday morning we went to church. Our church has recently started a sports outreach program. To kick off some events, including an FCA youth camp, we had Ken Johnson, the chaplain for the Indianapolis Colts, give the message yesterday. He gave a really good message on how to keep the fire burning and how to persevere in the face of adversity. There were several things that he said that really resonated with me, and I'll post about them later. My Sunday afternoon was spent cooking dinner (we had chicken enchiladas, yum!) reading and doing Bible study. All in all it was a very relaxing weekend.

This week is going to be so busy. It's only Monday, and I'm already panicking that I'm not going to get everything done. I am very busy at work, and I will be out of town for two days taking depositions. I will get back late Wednesday night, and then I leave again Friday afternoon. Not that I'm complaining about leaving again Friday. Oh, no, not at all. Friday afternoon a group of us girls are piling in a car and driving to Minneapolis to see this fine lady speak.

I am so excited to see Beth Moore I can barely contain myself!!! And, to top it off, it's my friend Shana's birthday on Friday, and we get to celebrate it with her!!! I'm so exited!!

So, have any of ya'll seen Beth Moore in person before? If so, what did you think? I do have to tell you all that I have spent the better part of the morning thinking about ways I could "accidentally" end up back stage to meet her. Hee hee! Anyone got any ideas for me ;)

PS. If you haven't left a comment or emailed me about the message board (and you want to), please do. If you are on the fence about it, please consider signing up, even if it's just to post your prayer requests. I really, really, really do love praying for you, and that way I would know your prayer requests. Anyway, just a thought....Now get back to thinking about ways to sneak me backstage ;)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Prayer Community

I know I promised you details about the prayer community today, and since today is nearly over, I better get with the program! So, here's the skinny (as it currently stands, and believe me, it could change. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. I want this to be productive and worthwhile for everyone involved!!)

Above all, I want this to be glorifying to God. This certainly is not about me. It's just something that God has laid on my heart, and I am humbled and grateful to be involved. It still amazes me daily that God has blessed me so much by bringing each of you into my life!

I have set up a Yahoo Group Account. This account has a message board where we can post prayer requests and a calendar where we can record answered prayers!! Here are a few things you might need or want to know about the Yahoo account.

1. It is a private account. This means that no random crazy person can log on and read our prayer requests or post any comments of any kind. You will have to be "invited" to join the group. Practically, that means I need your email address so you can log in.

2. Each person will have the ability to post their own prayer requests. This means that I won't moderate the posts. I'm doing this so you can post your prayer requests immediately and on your own time table. I also don't think moderation is necessary given our purpose and our goals. Which brings me to number 3.

3. I want this to be a safe place to share prayer requests. I want you so much to be able to be real there. I'm still playing around to see if there is a way to anonymously post requests, but I haven't figured that out yet. I pray that we won't need to do that anyway. I think it's great that most of us live far away from each other. Maybe that will free us up, so to speak. (And, for any of us who live near other members, let's face it, I'm sure they're already up in our bidness.) But, if there are sensitive prayer requests that need to remain anonymous, I'll find a way to make that happen. In the interim, if you have an anonymous request, please email it to me, and I will post it without referencing your name.

4. I also want this to be low maintenance because I know how busy we all are. Like I said, everyone is free to post prayer requests at any time. It's completely up to you how often you check the message board. To save you some time, I plan on compiling all the active prayer requests once a week and sending them out in one email. That way we can print them off and have them whenever and wherever we are praying. So, if you want to post whenever, but simply wait for the weekly email, that's golden. If you want to check it more often to make sure you have the most recent requests, that's fine too. It's completely up to you.

5. If you want to respond to some one's prayer request, by offering a written prayer or a scripture, I want you to feel free to do that. You can post them, or with the permission of the person requesting the prayer, send a direct email.

6. I am also planning on sending out a monthly calendar showing dates that prayers were answered. I think that it is so important not only to pray with one another but also to celebrate with each other. I also think that it is wonderful to offer praises in addition to offering prayer requests. So, if God has blessed you recently with something to praise Him for, I encourage you to post it. Let us celebrate with you!!

7. I pray that this prayer community would be a tool God uses to bring each of us closer to Him. So, in addition to other types of prayer requests, I want you to feel free to ask for spiritual prayer. For example, I have been struggling with getting out of bed in the morning for my quiet time. I would LOVE for you to pray that God gives me a supernatural kick out of bed in the mornings, or a full bladder. Whatever. I'm flexible. But you get the idea, right?

8. Finally, depending on the amount of people who want to be involved, we may need to make modifications, including limiting the size of the group, or perhaps, breaking off into pairs for a week or a month. But, we'll cross those bridges if and when we come to them. As my grandma says, I don't want to get the cart before the horse. Right now the only member of the prayer community is me.

So, bottom line, please leave me a comment or email me if you are interested. I will send you the link to the group. I can't tell you enough how special you all are to me. When I started blogging, I NEVER in a million, trillion years thought I would meet you amazing women (well, except the ones I knew already ;)). I LOVE to pray for you. It truly is an honor. And, I would love nothing more than to continue to do that.

I hope you all have a great weekend. I'm off to look for scanners tomorrow. Does anyone have a good photo scanner that they would recommend?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Great Debate

Throughout history there have been some great debates:

Calvinism vs. Arminianism

North vs. South

Coke vs. Pepsi

Bo vs. Luke

Jon Bon Jovi vs.

Well Jon Bon Jovi vs. no one because, come on, that one is not seriously in dispute.

And, along side these great debates have been many burning questions like:

Did Lee Harvey Oswald act alone?

Who really shot J.R.?

And, most importantly,

WHAT happened to Michael Jackson????

But now, I bring you the burning question/debate of July 2008. What should I do with my hair?? Yep, that's right, it's time for me to get my hair done again, and as many of you know, this is a major event. I tend to change my hair color every time I get my hair done, although, admittedly, recently I've only been changing the shade of red. To help you make an informed contribution to this debate, I am going to steal Kelly's "hairumentry" idea and post pictures of my hair in various shades of the rainbow and in various different styles. Unfortunately, in order to do that, I have to go buy a new scanner because I kick it old school. So, stay tuned for pictures this weekend. But for now, you can help me out this way. Have you seen a hairstyle and/or color recently that you have liked? Perhaps on a celebrity? I am open to many suggestions. Just remember that I would prefer not to look like this:

Thanks in advance for helping me out. I know it will be more helpful after you see my hairumentry, but I'm working on it!
PS. I've still been praying about the prayer community, and I think I have some ideas. If I can write them down in any cogent or coherent fashion, I plan on posting them Friday. So, check back then. Ha! How's that for suspense!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

If I Could Go Back in Time...

Hey there everyone! I hope each of you had a great 4th of July weekend. We did NOTHING all weekend long. It was glorious. Well, mostly. But, I won't bore you with how I got sick over the weekend. Anyway, I feel like I should blog because I haven't blogged in awhile, but I don't really have anything exciting to blog about. Lying in bed watching the men's Wimbledon final doesn't make for good blogging material. But, can I just say I was pumped that Rafael Nadal won. I love him. Does anyone else like tennis???

On another note, I got a "save the date" card in the mail today. The "save the date" card is for a fundraising Gala that George and I go to almost every year. It is held at the Salisbury House, and it is fantastic!! The Salisbury House is a real, live castle located in Des Moines. It was built in the 1920s and was modeled after 16th Century English architecture. Here is a picture of the Salisbury House today.

It really is an amazing building, and the Salisbury House Foundation has done a tremendous job renovating it and keeping it up. The Foundation sponsors some great historical and musical events at the Salisbury House, and in the summer time, they have Shakespeare on the Lawn. To raise funds for the house, each September the Salisbury House holds the "Gatsby Gala." The Gatsby Gala is one of the best parties in town, but this is the best part: Everyone who attends the Gatsby Gala gets to dress up in their finest 1920s outfits. Now, I don't know about you, but I have always loved the 1920s. There is something very chic about that era, and I have always wanted to be a flapper.

So, since I don't have anything else to blog about, and to appease my good friend Julie who told me I don't post enough pictures, I thought I'd share a couple of pictures from the last Gatsby Gala.

Please ignore the fact that I look like a house. It's, um, all the feathers.

So, there you have it. Hopefully, we'll be able to go again this year. I better start practicing the Charleston now. But, before I do, what about you? If you could go back in time, what era would you want to visit?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

I Knew It!

Leigh Ann had one of these on her blog yesterday, and I wanted to try it. After all, who doesn't want to find out who his/her celebrity look-alikes are. Well, except for George, but under threat of great punishment, I've been forbidden to tell you who his celebrity matches were. So, instead, I will share mine. And, all I have to say is, I KNEW IT! I AM bad to the bone. Seriously. Don't laugh, y'all. You'll hurt my feelings. If you don't believe me, look for yourself.

As you can clearly see, I am a cross between Sydney Bristow and Xena the Warrior Princess. From now on you can refer to me as Xena Bristow. I would stay and chat more, but I have to go apply for a job at the CIA.
Have a wonderful 4th of July weekend everyone!! If you haven't told me how God has blessed you recently, please do!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

So That

A group of women from my church are studying the story of Rahab of Jericho from Joshua in our summer session Bible study. We are using Francine River's novella on Rahab (in her Lineage of Grace series) to help facilitate the study. Last week we talked about the fact that while God destroyed all the people in Jericho, He saved Rahab. In fact, He saved her even though she was a Caananite prostitute. A few things struck me about this passage of Scripture, but what may have struck out the most is how faithful God is. He is faithful to His people, no matter where they are from, and no matter what their backgrounds are. We are all sinners, saved by grace, redeemed and restored by the blood of Christ. It amazed me how much He cares for us. It also struck me that Rahab's story was a wonderful, early Old Testament representation of God's faithfulness to uphold the promise He made to Abram in Genesis 12. Genesis 12:1-3 contains God's first covenental promise to His people.

The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.

“I will make you into a great nation
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.

I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you.”
Genesis 12:1-3.

In those verses, God promised that "all peoples on earth will be blessed through" Abraham and his offspring. In the battle of Jericho, God saved a Caananite prostitute, thereby, fulfilling His promise to bless people other than Abraham and his descendants.

As I was reading Genesis 12:1-3 again, I remembered something else. Awhile back I read an article that discussed these verses in the context of a missionary mandate. The author had said although God had clearly blessed Abraham in this passage, the promised blessing also came with a stated purpose: "you will be a blessing." According to the author, there was an implied "so that" in these verses. Abraham was blessed "so that" He would be a blessing, and God would bless Abraham "so that" all the peoples of the earth would be blessed. I don't know if that resonates with you, but it does with me. God has blessed me so that I will be a blessing to someone else. God has blessed you so that you will be a blessing to someone else. So, my question to you today is this: how has God blessed you recently, and who are you going to bless today because of it?

Since I posed the question, I'll start *wink*. God has blessed me with wonderful girlfriends, both here at home and in the blog world. So, today, I am going to try to reach out to someone I work with who struggles with feeling loved and accepted. Now, it's your turn. And, don't let me down here. I know God has blessed each of you. Tell me, and more importantly Him, that you realize it! I love you all.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Prayer, Prayer, Prayer

Girls, I want to thank you for all of your input about the blogging prayer community! I will continue to pray about it, and I would appreciate it so much if you did, too. If you have any more ideas or suggestions, please feel free to leave comments or email me.

In the interim, if you have any prayer requests, please let me know. I love praying for you!