Wednesday, January 29, 2003


I was commenting on a post "False Assumptions by IreneQ and decided I needed to blog my comment!

Have you seen the movie "Joshua"? It's based on the novels by Joseph Gizone. The premise is that a stranger moves into town and is able to bring the town together and make it a real community. Everyone wonders who this stranger is. It is a great movie, filled with wit and humor and heart-tugs. One scene sticks with me more than any other.

You see, this stranger is apparantly sent from God and the viewer wonders if he is an angel or Jesus himself. One night as he is walking around town, (now we know what he drives...he doesn't drive!) he comes upon a tent revival. Real live revival meeting! Tent and all, with a cross on top and everything! The preacher is dressed in a stereotypical evangelist shiny suit is ready to do some "healing". He walks to a girl in a wheelchair and amazingly after a tiny prayer she is healed and can walk. It's a "miracle"! Joshua is witnessing all this and when the tent is silent during corporate prayer, he approaches the stage and calls out to the preacher that "you don't need to do this." This is an interruption and distraction of course, and the preacher politely reprimands Joshua who continues on toward the stage.

As a Christian I struggle with being critical of others and very judgmental. I was waiting for Joshua to really let this "preacher" have it and tell him how it really is! I was really waiting to see what was going to happen next...

Joshua got close enough to the preacher to whisper to him..."I know you want to have the faith" and gently grabbed the man's hand to hold it. The preacher wasn't sure of what just happened, but his whole countenance began to change.

That grabbed me. I am so quick to look at another Christian and criticize their "false beliefs" and/or "teachings". I never thought about the fact that they could be seeking Him just as I am. While we do need to use discernment when we hear any teaching, we also need to listen and discern with love. Joshua knew the heart of the preacher, so in a way he did have an advantage, but it got me thinking...shouldn't I give the benefit of the doubt? I can't know a heart like Christ does, but if Christ lives within me...and I can learn to trust the Spirit, wouldn't that help me to know the heart of another?

I thought the preacher should have been scolded...Joshua held the man's hand and whispered to him in love.


State of the Union

All have their own opinion. I have mine. I am thankful to have George W in the White House. Do I agree with everything he says/does? No, but I really believe he has in his mind and his heart what is best for this country and our people, and the world. I believe he does do his best to seek God's will and he does understand the responsibility he has leading this powerful nation. He understands that there are long-range consequences for each decision he makes, and I do not believe he makes any of them hastily.

What confirms this to me? Simply, the fact that he has lost so much popular opinion in the polls. Most of the time when God decides to move, it doesn't go over very well with the people involved. The economy is down, that is never popular. People are losing jobs, that is never popular. There is a grim possibility of war and that is definately not something America desires. I don't see our president bowing to the whims of what's popular. I don't see him worrying about what the liberals think. I don't see him trying to convince anyone to join him in his beliefs. I see him acting on his beliefs, even if it is not popular. I see him attempting to gain support, but whether or not he gets it, it doesn't change what is right, it doesn't change his decision. I admire that in our president.

Pray for our leaders. Pray for the world's leaders and all its peoples.

Monday, January 27, 2003

My Impact List

I have an "impact list". This is a list of a few people I know that are non-believers. One of these people is someone I see almost daily. I am not sure I know exactly where she is at spiritually, except that she is lost. She's a good person who seems easily swayed by any doctrine that "feels right". She doesn't consider herself "religious", but I do see her as somewhat "spiritual" although in a "new age" sort of way. She doesn't practice any sort of religion that I know of, she simply lives life. She knows my beliefs and she appreciates that I don't "preach" at her. She is very turned off by "street evangelism" as I'd call it...something really confrontational. She laughs off the gospel tracks that people occasionally leave in the store. I pray for her salvation.

I invite her to church every now and then and never really push the subject with her because it would turn her off completely. She is a person who likes to do good for other people. She donates money to charities and stuff, and is always talking about wanting to "make a difference in the world." At Christmas, our church took food to the needy and brought the people back to the church for a celebration...a party. I saw it as an opportunity to invite this person to come with me and I didn't even have to invite! As soon as I mentioned what it was we were going to be doing, she jumped at the chance to help! She came along, donated food, and sat next to me at the celebration which involved Chuch sharing the Christmas story and presenting the gospel! I was glowing inside and had to work to keep from exploding that she was hearing the gospel. After that, nothing much came of anything.

Today, I saw God work in awesome ways for my friend Katie who will most likely blog about that in the next couple of days, so I won't steal the thunder right now. It was awesome though and I shared it with this person on my impact list. She said "wow, that's some good karma!" and I chuckled and replied "no, not karma, God." and she then said "Oh yeah, you believe in God. It's easier for me to believe in karma."

Easier to believe in karma? What the heck does that mean? I didn't get a chance to ask her...but I will have to someday soon. She's moving in a few weeks! Easier to believe in karma?

Sunday, January 26, 2003

Big Blessing, Small Prayer

I was blessed at church today when Chuck prayed for the other churches who were having services. He prayed that their worship would glorify God and that hearts would be transformed. In a day where mentalities include "my church is bigger than your church" it was humbling to hear a simple prayer that was so purposeful. Hearts are transformed during worship. Hearts are transformed by the Spirit of God that lives in a great many churches. We should pray for each other more.

Evil Returning

Author: Katie

First of all, I want to thank those who shared there awesome comments and offered such great insight on the temptation of Lucifer. Now I have something else to share. Before continuing I would like to warn all brain bleeders that you might need to have your emergency medical kit handy.

I know that angels are created to worship God. I may be wrong here because I don't have my Bible at hand but from what I understand, angels don't have the freedom to choose right or wrong. They were created to worship God and if they don't they fall and that's it. This is why angels can't receive salvation. They were created to worship and serve God alone. This is why when the's the end of the story for them! There's no going back because there is no redemption for the angels. Now, as far as evil in heaven........

If nobody tempted Lucifer and it was something that just came from within, something internal, if this is true then God can not destroy all evil. Just as it came from nothing in Lucifer, what's to stop it from coming back in some other self righteous vain angel after all evil is destroyed? I'm not being critical. This is just another ponderable! I can't wait to hear your response! I love seeing numbers in the comment section!!!!!!!!

Cheerful Giving

Author: Katie

I love my Father. He is wonderful, loving, more than anything I can put into words....He just.......IS! I have been in a situation of financial need and I have been anticipating what God will do through it all. However, it came to the issue of paying tithes on some left over scholarship funds from school. I take advantage of this during the semester to help with expenses since I am schooling and parenting full time and not available for a full time job. With the child support checks, and some help from one of my precious gifts from God (Sue), I managed to get by. Now that the child support isn't coming in anymore, I thought it wise to stretch the left over scholarship money as far as possible. I was struggling because I really wanted to pay tithes but by not paying tithes, maybe that would free Sue up a little on the financial end. I have been praying about it.

Today, for some reason, the church passed around the collection basket (this is not a regular practice at our church). I felt that I should at least give something back to the Provider in my life. When I did, immediately after the service, another precious sister in my church gave me a card. It was a beautiful card that brought tears to my eyes. Especially when I saw that it contained a check that was over and beyond the gift I had put in the collection basket. As if it weren't enough that I had Godbumps during worship and was blessed by many spontaneous acts of worship today. What an awesome message about Looney Bird churches (That's another blog! LOL). I AM SO BLESSED! I don't know why God has put me in Northbrook or why He has blessed our church with so many wise and gifted teachers. I don't know why our body is there but every member of the body DOES have a part and every part fits. Only God can do something like that! Wooohoooo! I praise His holy, beautiful, wonderful, magnificent awesome name!

Wednesday, January 22, 2003


Author: Katie

I am currently enrolled in a secular college. Through out the past few semesters I have had to hear over and over how we can't discuss things from a religious perspective. We have to see things from a "Literary" point of view. I am being taught about evolution by a man who graduated from a baptist seminary! To hear biology taught as "these are the facts and this is the way it is" drives me crazy. All of science is based on theories. Even facts are never absolute. For instance if you see a wall and the color is blue....under a microscope that may not be the color at all. It's all a matter of which way the light is bending and the kind of lighting in the room. What if the wall looks white and you put a black light bulb in a room....the color is different then. The only absolute is God He never changes. He is, always has been and always will be God, and He is the one who is spoken of as a "belief" or "idea" or a "philosophy" or simply, an "opinion" that I am not allowed to share in class. Why is it that the secular world has the right to teach me things that go against my beliefs but I am not allowed to take a stand for what I believe in? I get so sick of it.

Why do I have to dish out oodles of cash to go to a private Christian school to be taught Truth? Why can't Truth just be taught in secular schools? It really bothers me when I'm in my biology class and I'm being told that I evolved from an ape as if I really did! I am forced to sit back and accept that point of view. I sit there and think about how I'm being taught lies. I have to take tests and answer multiple choice questions about science and if I write down what I believe to be's wrong. So, I have to take what I am taught (that I believe is a lie) and pretend that I believe it.

Last semester I had to give a persuasion speech on cloning. One person......ONE... in our group would not speak against it so the entire group decided that we would pretend that we support it even though 3 out of 4 of us didn't. So, I had the biggest part of the speech and I had to persuade people that cloning was ethical. IT'S NOT ETHICAL AT ALL AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED! IT'S ABOMINABLE!!!!! I hated it but yet, in order to get where I have to go to get my degree, I am forced to play their game their way. The only thing that keeps me going is knowing that soon I will attend a Christian college to finish getting my degree. Then, I will be able to counteract all that I have been forced to do in school. I am cooperating now......but God's day will come. He is equipping me to teach Truth, and I will do my best to undo the injustice that has been done to me since I began college. I just can't wait until it's my turn.

A Look Into the Heart

Author: Katie

Sue is always telling me that Jesus has a different attitude towards people because He already knows what's in their heart. Well, if His Spirit is alive in us, wouldn't that give us the ability to see inside a persons heart if our own heart was in the right place? Maybe she didn't miss a blessing last night. Maybe she saw past the outward appearances and saw the heart. Maybe the person she helped in November had his heart in the right place and the Holy Spirit saw the man's heart and moved Sue to help. Maybe the same thing happened last night. Maybe the Holy Spirit saw the heart of the man asking her for help. Maybe when she reaches heaven one day, God will show her the things she was spared and she may see that she was spared some horrible consequences last night.....Maybe.

Tuesday, January 21, 2003

Did I Miss a Blessing?

Back in November I posted about a blessing I received because I felt led to help a stranger out who asked me for help. Tonight, I had another opportunity. It turned out different.

As I was leaving the mall a half hour after closing and walking to my jeep, a man walking rather quickly called out to me. He was behind me a bit to my right and I turned to see what he wanted. He was coming toward me seemingly rather aggressively, and said "Maam, can you give me a quarter for something to eat? Just a quarter...I won't have anything to eat unless you help me." I told him "No, I am not going to help you." It sounded so cold, I know that, but his words sounded so rehearsed that I expected him to start begging me for money and I thought I'd stop it before it started. The man replied. "Ok, Maam, God bless you, Jesus loves you."

What just happened? As I got into the car I thought "Yes, Jesus does love me. Even though I didn't feed this man tonight." Do I need to repent for my actions? Why was it that back in November that I so willingly helped someone who asked me for help, and tonight I turned a man away?

Was it the humility of the first man that let my heart feel compassion? Was it the aggressive way the man tonight walked toward me that scared me somewhat? Was it a spirit of discernment that said "no" tonight? Was it because the man was black? and large? I don't think so, but I have to put it out there. I was somewhat afraid by the way the man was coming toward me. He turned and walked away when I told him no, and then asked God to bless me. Why did the man say that? Was it a meaningful prayer from him? or was it something he used to "convict" me? I wondered why the man asked me for only a quarter...a quarter won't really buy him a meal you know?

I wonder if I missed out on another awesome blessing? Should I praise God for His protection tonight? Man! It's hard being a Christian!

Sunday, January 19, 2003

Noah and the Coming of the Son of Man

Matthew 24: 36"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[1] but only the Father. 37As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 40Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. 41Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left.

42"Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. 43But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. 44So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.

Luke 17: 26"Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.
28"It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.
30"It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed. 31On that day no one who is on the roof of his house, with his goods inside, should go down to get them. Likewise, no one in the field should go back for anything. 32Remember Lot's wife! 33Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it. 34I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. 35Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left."

These verses were brought into a different focus for me today as we studied Genesis 6-9. The basics are this: Noah was seen as righteous through God's eyes. Noah could not pass judgement without God's grace, but God chose Him to build the ark. Noah's Ark is not a children's story, it is a story about the wrath of God's judgement on the wicked. God's grace saved Noah and "shut him in" the ark. The wicked were taken from the earth. It was a new beginning for man. Noah, in a way, was the "second Adam" because he was told after coming out of the ark to "be fruitful and multiply" just as in the beginning. The ark was a kind of microcosm of creation. God didn't destroy his creation, he preserved a portion of it. He removed the wicked from it, to begin fresh and new. However, it obviously didn't get rid of the problem of sin because immediately after Noah emerged from the ark, he worshiped God, but proceeded to get drunk and get naked! The point is Noah represents to us how God's grace can cover us and take us through the judgement. If we are in Christ, we will pass through the judgement.

Now for the interesting ponderable. The above verses tell of how it "was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man." In Noah's day...who was taken away? Who was left behind?

The wicked were taken from the earth. Gone from creation so that creation could start again. Noah's story did point out however, that our problem of not a product of our environment. We won't survive without God's love and mercy covering us.

In Noah's day "every inclination, every thought of the heart was only evil". Because of this God was grieved. Only his grace preserved his own creation to attempt life and living once again. Northbrook U really challenged me to think about all this today.

1 Thessalonians 1
9for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead--Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.

Many believers debate over the end times and what will actually occur. I don't know either, so if you thought I did...HA! What I do know is that God's grace covers me. Whatever happens...if believers are all taken up to heaven before God's wrath on earth...yay us, but remember that (Revelation 12:7) there will be "war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back." so maybe that doesn't sound so cool either. If instead we are left behind and the wicked are taken from us, that there will be heaven on earth. Revelation 21:2 "I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband."...Revelation 21:10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God."

So, I've just been pondering about wanting Jesus to come back. When He He taking me? or taking the wicked away from me? Either way is cool...I JUST WANT TO BE WITH HIM! Woooooohooooooooooo!!!

Saturday, January 18, 2003

The Pig

One day I was eating breakfast. I had the family guinea pig nibbling on some parsley next to me, on the table. Before I new it the pig had his head in my bowl and stole my corn pops! The pig!

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Not the Momma!

I am not the momma! I do not claim to be the momma! It's nights like these that I wish the momma were home! Katie is off at praise team rehearsal while I am hear trying to be a good "not the momma". Poor Tif. She is in a new school and her school from last year was not the greatest. She is a very bright "A" student, but math is giving her some trouble as she is playing a bit of "catch-up" in learning division this year. The other kids got some instruction last year and she is having some trouble. She is home tonight with an assignment from a student teacher. I student taught once and I know that it's tough. This teacher of Tif's is coming across very "hardnosed and strict". She is determined that the kids are going to learn...which is great. However, I may be disagreeing with Tif's assignment. She had a timed test today. She has missed 3 days of school due to a toothache which will need to have a root canal. (It was a loooooooooooooong weekend!) Anyway, Tiffany missed 44 problems on the timed division test. (Many she simply didn't even get to.) The student teacher, I'm sure with good intentions, is requiring each student to rewrite the missed problems 10 times each. In theory that is great! In reality, when you miss 44's not great at all! Like I said before, Tiffany is a bright kid and will learn this stuff but give the kid a break! She missed a few days (her only this year) because of a toothache that kept her up all night for 4-5 nights, she has church on Wednesday nights which limits time spent on homework and is in her room bawling as she attempts to get this hefty assignment done.

I am sitting out here surfing the Web and listening to her cry. I hear her say things like "I HATE student teachers!" and "I WILL NEVER GET 400 PROBLEMS DONE!" "I DON'T WANT TO GO TO SCHOOL TOMORROW" (she may get her wish too...winter storm warning. 2-5 inches of snow possible. The city will close down if we get that!) I try to be encouraging. I try to tell her to just work on the next problem and not think about all of them at once. She will learn it as she does it so it is not in vain. I do think it is a great amount of work to expect from a 10 year old, but at the same time if it's assigned, I think she should do it. I'm so glad at the moment "I'm not the momma!" It's too hard to be the momma. This is why God made me a "not the momma"...oh Katie...where are you? Please come home!

I hate when kids are so miserable that they cry.


The framily watched Signs today. *yawn* I wasn't impressed. I was bored. Nothing new here. I've heard people say it makes you think about what you believe in. I'm not thinking about what I believe in. I know what I believe. I am thinking about everything else I could have been doing during the time I was watching Signs.

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Bouncing Back

Author: Katie

You know, I'm really thankful that I had the opportunity to undergo some persecution the other day. I undergo persecution a lot but this time was a bit different. The person I blogged about.....Clueless.......has really caused me to reflect on how I was much like him at one point in my life and what happened to cause that to change.

Today in church I spent some time in deep reflection. It's amazing how easy it is to forget who my first Love is when distracted by persecution and During the awesome service, I went back to revisit the cross. I'm sad to say, it's been a while. We had communion also and that took up a good portion of the service. The music played and I understood the lyrics of some songs like never before. I'm not going into specific examples because that's not what this blog is about. What I will say though is that in the time of communion and worship, I found, in those words, and in the intimacy of the moment, where my focus should be. I realized that it hasn't been there.

After church I kept pondering things that happened and I kept thinking about Clueless. I remember a time in my life when I was clueless. It took tragedy for me to wake up. My life was in a mess to the point that I saw no hope of it ever getting better. I found myself not wanting to go on. I wanted to die and I would even think of ways to kill myself that would be the easiest. But, I had a baby to consider and I didn't think it was fair to mess up his life just because I wanted to escape. I praise God for my son. God used him to save my life that day. There were other days after that as well that my children were the only ones keeping me together. But, on that particular day, I remember praying.."God, If it wasn't for my son, I would take my life today. You have to help me. I can't go on like this. I can't do it!" I cried so long and so hard.

I'm going to take a step backward to say that prior to my son's birth, I was a pretty rebellious person. I had a filthy mouth and life was about parties! I remember hanging out with people who were doing cocaine, shooting up, smoking pot, name it. Personally, I was afraid to do anything stronger than alcohol, speed or marijuana. I guess that's a good thing. Anyhow, I was one of those people who mocked Christians. I said and did things that I would never admit to in public or anywhere else for that matter. I have a very shameful past. Anyhow, I thought I could make it without God. I thought I knew better.

My husband and I both agreed that the partying had to stop when children came into the picture. We wanted to be 'responsible' parents (hint: there's more than quitting the party scene that makes a parent responsible). So, although we stopped partying, there was still so much more to do in order to achieve this goal. Unfortunately, my husband and I had different theories on what a responsible person behaved like, which brings me up to where I left off earlier......

I cried so long. I never felt so alone and so hopeless in my life. I wanted things to change but I felt helpless. I had no clue what to do. I tried everything I knew.......apart from God. I cried out to God that day. I told Him that if He didn't do something, that I had no other choice but to handle it my way, the cowards way, the selfish way. I even thought about taking my son with me because I thought it would be better than leaving him behind with the mess of a life I had birthed him into. Boy am I glad God woke me up that day. The next morning was a Sunday and I decided to go to church again for the first time in many years.

That brief moment of crying out was when it changed. I didn't know it at the time. But slowly my life began to change from that moment on. I was still in a bad marriage for many years after that but I found my sanity in church and with church people. I found strength in my faith and I found my faith growing through every difficult time in my life. I truly believe that the reason for this is because from that moment on, I put my life in God's hands. Being human, I have had periods when I have tried to do things myself, when I have had doubts in the Truth presented in the Bible, when I have doubted God..........many times. I still do (as you can see by reading previous blogs). But, I know God is real and He is there and He hears and knows and meets my every need. Every time I got to the point that I didn't think I could handle life anymore, I prayed for Him to help me out of it and just because of that moment of prayer.......I found a source of strength to endure.

Each time I prayed, there was an answer. Each time I got an answer, my faith grew. Each time my faith grew, I became closer to God and realized how much I was messing my life up. I learned that the Truths I learned from studying the Bible and prayer were the true roadmaps to follow in life. It is a very difficult road to follow, but the life without it was much more difficult. I truly know with everything in me that I would not be blogging about this today if I hadn't given my life over to God's hands.

As I go back and read over the blog from a couple days ago, I have to laugh. To think that I still get distracted about the why's and what if's even now just blows my mind. Will I ever learn? So, God doesn't heal a toothache, or a headache, or even a disease when and how I want Him to. Big deal. The things He does do is where I need to keep my focus and these things are far greater and longer lasting. Man, I am such a human sometimes.

Wow! For two years I have been trying to come up with my testimony for our website and I haven't been able to think about how to present it! I have it! I know what to write now! It's all thanks to Clueless. I just hope that he gets a clue someday. I prayed for him today. I will continue to. I will never forget him. God used his persecution towards my friend and myself to give me yet another major turning point in my life. That makes him unforgetable. He may never change his attitude and he may never stop persecuting Christians. But that doesn't mean that God can't work through it. I hope that someday Clueless will see things from a different perspective and take a chance on God. And you know what? It really can be compared to the effects of pot smoking in some ways. I do get high on the Spirit but it's the Spirit of God and not marijuana. The effects are better, longer lasting, they save money, and have only good consequences. I've had both and from now on, I choose the latter. (The comment used by Clueless when he spoke on 'walking funny' is great! You definately do walk different when you stop going to church.....although it's not always so funny.)

I am walking straight because I am high on the Spirit of Christ!

"For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another. But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life." (Titus 3:3-7)

Saturday, January 11, 2003

We've Been Dissed!

Author: Katie

Some poor clueless guy dissed our blog and site. Since at one time in my life I probably shared his point of view, I feel safe in bringing to you this part of his blog.

Clueless: You might think that a website with a tagline like "we hope to glorify God by sharing all He is doing in the lives of two sisters in Christ" would be just too easy for me to mock.

You would be wrong.

This is wonderful s--t, folks. Allow me to quote at length:

Many of the blogs I have come across mention that they are "blogging from work". This I don't understand. I am assuming that the computer they use at work must be available for them to use on their breaks or anytime before or after they clock in to work. I certainly hope this is the case. I would love to take time out of my busy schedule at work to blog, but no can do. God won't let me!

So, let me get this straight: God is your direct supervisor?

My response: He hit that nail right on the head!!!!!!!! Wooohooooo!!!!!!!!!!!

Clueless quotes again: What is this new catch phrase......"I'm all about that??" I always thought the thing to say was "I'm all for that." I guess it's all the new lingo of the music business. Sooner or later it's going to rub off on me. I'll go visit my Mom and she'll be wondering what I'm talking about! I'm all about that! ????????? All about what????????? LOL. Hey, Sue says I'm weird......maybe she's right! :)

Sue is absolutely right, babe. Everyone talks the music biz lingo these days.

My response: Okay, yeah, whatever....but I have more important things on my agenda then keeping up with the latest music lingo. .......although since there is a music pro and two pre teens living at home (who think their mom rules!)..... I eventually find myself picking up the latest lingo in spite of myself.

Clueless quotes again: How about that Sodom and Gomorrah thing? I thought Abraham was pretty pompous to go to the Lord and bargain him down to saving the cities for the sake of ten. Then again, the Lord never said anything about saving it for the sake of any until Abraham stepped in on behalf of the city. Abraham, like we, had a hard time understanding the mind of God. He asked God "Surely you wouldn't do such a thing, destroying the innocent with the guilty....Surely you wouldn't do that! Should not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?" WHOA!

Like we? WHOA!

My response: Like whatEVer!!!!!!!

Clueless quotes Sue again: YAY! It was soooooooo good to be in church again. I miss it soooooooooo much over the holidays. Every year it's the same for those of us in retail. Work every Sunday from Thanksgiving through Christmas. I love the "rush" of the shopping season and all the sales, but the part about missing worship service stinks. I miss it a lot and my walk suffers a bit.

This is like those new anti-pot ads, you know: smoke pot, get date raped or smoke pot, shoot your friend. Except this is miss church, start walking funny.

My response: Exactly! (Maybe he's not so clueless) ... Seems as though the joke's on him!

Clueless: I can't recommend this highly enough, people. Read and enjoy!

My response: I am thankful for his recommendations. We need more like that! I hope many more people like him will visit our site. God bless this guy!

Well there you have it brothers and sisters!

"As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit which now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved." (Eph. 2:1-5)

"Bless those who persecute you." (Romans 12:14).

"Do not repay anyone evil for evil." (Romans 12:17).

"But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." (Matt. 5:44). know what to do!!!!!!!!!!! Haste makes waste!!!!

Friday, January 10, 2003

Potty Tales...

Author: Katie

I had to take a potty break. There's some great reading material in the bathroom. I do my best thinking in there. Lots of good things happen in the bathroom. I have had some major revelations, eye opening experiences, laughs (don't ask), intimate moments of prayer....and the bathroom! After all, what else is there to do in there but read, think, and many times it is very necessary to pray! This seems to be a common phenomenon as I have found when sharing this fact with others. So, I don't think I'm crazy (although whoever reads this may come to a different conclusion). Which brings me to the subject of my most recent bathroom experience.

I have a book that I read sometimes when I go in there. It's called "The Power of a Praying Parent" by Stormy Omartian. The chapter I read today dealt with having a sound mind. Now, I know upon reading this blog, one may think that my mind is far from sound. Well, I agree! But that's all going to change now because I PRAYED! It was an answer to my previous blog that I wrote before the "experience". I prayed this prayer for myself as well as my children and now, I share some of it in this blog.

In the past my life has been one of dysfunction, confusion, unorganization. I have been scatterbrained, and negative in my thinking. My thoughts have been complex and I stay confused a lot. But tonight I prayed and I am going to have faith and believe in God's answer.....after all, I prayed according to His will! This is the prayer.....

"Thank You for promising us a sound mind. I lay claim to that promise for Justin, Tiffany and myself. I pray that our minds be clear, alert, bright, intelligent, stable, peaceful and uncluttered. I pray there will be no confusion, no dullness and no unbalanced, scattered, unorganized, or negative thinking. I pray that our minds will not be filled with complex or confusing thoughts. Rather, give us clarity of mind so that we are able to think straight at all times. Give us the ability to make clear decisions, to understand all we need to know and to be able to focus on what we need to do. Where there is now any mental instability, impairment, or dysfunction, I speak healing in Jesus' name. May we be renewed in the spirit of our minds (Eph. 4:23) and have the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16).

I pray that we will so love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength that there will be no room in us for the lies of the enemy or clamoring of the world. May the Word of God take root in our hearts and fill our minds with things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous, and praiseworthy (Phi. 4:8). Give us understanding that what goes into our mind becomes part of us, so that we will weigh carefully what we see and hear.

You have said, "You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You" (Is 26:3). I pray that our faith in You and Your Word will grow daily so that we will live forever in peace and soundness of mind.

Some weapons of warfare: Romans 12:2, Phil. 4:6-7, 2 Cor 10:4-5, Romans 8:6, Eph. 4:17-18.

God is Good. :)

As Pompous as Abraham

Author: Katie

I guess I can be as pompous as Abraham sometimes. Like for instance, today when I prayed I asked God to forgive me for my lack of faith and for questioning Him. I asked Him if He keeps a list of things to heal and not to heal. Like for instance...colds. God doesn't seem to heal a cold. He doesn't heal toothaches, migraines, or upset stomaches. He may prevent them but usually, once thy are going strong, it usually takes drugs to be free from them. He has helped a few small headaches and stomachaches not to escalate but for the most part, there doesn't seem to be a response. Migraines on the other hand, don't go away.....even with drugs. The toothache thing.......well, my daughter has been suffering from an abcess to the point of wanting to die. Neither of us has slept well for 3 nights and we're going on 4. She's on antibiotics that aren't working and prescription drugs that don't keep her pain free long enough to get her to the next dose. I don't know how much more of this either of us can take. So, now when I pray I say "I'm not going to ask you to heal her because I know you won't. It's obvious. We've been here's not on the list........" That may be why He doesn't heal her. I don't know. I guess I have a bad attitude. I wonder why it is when we are doing something wonderful for His glory, he allows the enemy to come in and make it impossible for us to complete a task. EVERY SINGLE TIME! Why can't we just do something wonderful and torture free????????? Then there is that ever famous "There's a lesson in it I'm sure......OH BROTHER!"

I feel terrible. I love Him. I do. I know it doesn't sound like I do but today I had a wonderful coffee date with one of my best friends who is also one of my pastor's wives. (No not one pastor with many wives, one of many pastors but only one wife.....His name is David but he doesn't fit the mold of King David.) Anyhow, my friend and I had the most wonderful conversation so full of love for Him (well except for the part about His list of things not to heal). We had a good laugh over it but I really do get angry and then I have to stop praying and ask the Holy Spirit to intercede for me because I'm not sure how to pray.

It's like I know before I even start to pray that He isn't going to answer and I figure......What's the point? This is horrible, then I start having doubts about my faith. I am strongly rooted in my faith and I study His word every day. I'm going to school to get a degree in ministry and here I sit in a cesspool of doubt! What is wrong with me? I am also going for a degree in counseling and I sometimes wonder if I need one myself! Auggghhh!

I'll be okay soon. I get in these slumps. But, I'll bounce back.

Sue, I know you love to read my blogs. I'm sorry this one's so negative. It's all I have.

Father, forgive my attitude and lack of faith. Please restore me to a deeper relationship with You and bring me back to you and please.......take the ache from Tiffany's toothache!

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Read the Bible in a Year...AGAIN!

We are doing it again, reading the Word all the way through. This time different translation (New Living) and chronologically. I am really hoping to get aneven better understanding of God's Word and His Plan by reading the events in the order they happened in history.

We read the entry for January 7th yesterday and obviously most all of what we have read so far is Genesis. It's curious to me that Adam and Noah lived to be 900+ years old, but when we read about Abraham and Sarah she laughed when God said she was going to have a son at the ripe age of 90. If you are living to be 900 years old, 90 doesn't seem too old in relation to that. Sarah, however, lived only to be 127 and Abraham 175 years. What happened that people started living for just short the span of a millenium and at this point in Genesis people are living between 100-200 years? Curious. I guess that sin crept in and along came the disintegration of the physical body?

How about that Sodom and Gomorrah thing? I thought Abraham was pretty pompous to go to the Lord and bargain him down to saving the cities for the sake of ten. Then again, the Lord never said anything about saving it for the sake of any until Abraham stepped in on behalf of the city. Abraham, like we, had a hard time understanding the mind of God. He asked God "Surely you wouldn't do such a thing, destroying the innocent with the guilty....Surely you wouldn't do that! Should not the Judge of all the earth do what is right?" WHOA! Who was Abraham to be questioning the Almighty like that?!? I am struck by the patience of God with man right there. I'm also thankful that God is so patient with me. There have been those times where I have asked the same thing " you really know what you are doing?"

Sometimes I wonder what would happen if God said "I am about to destroy America, but I will spare it for the sake of 50 righteous men." Would He find 50 righteous?

Then there is that whole thing with Abraham going to sacrifice his own son. Abraham was obedient in that test and I sure hope I am never "tested" like that! God did provide the sacrifice just as Abraham told Isaac He would. I wonder what Isaac was thinking when he was tied on the altar over the wood about to be sacrificed. Did he think "ummmmmm, this is NOT what I thought my dad meant! Hello? Dad...joke's over, this isn't very funny. AAAAUGGHHH!!!!!! THAT KNIFE SURE LOOKS SHARP!" Or was Isaac all about offering himself? Just like Jesus?

I just love reading His Word. There is so much there. So much I don't understand and want to learn. I can't get enough! Woooooohooooooooooo!!!!!!

Love to ponder....

Monday, January 06, 2003

I Have a New Pig

Author: Katie

I have a new pig! Well, the framily has a new pig. But, it was my idea! It's a guinea pig! At first I wanted to name him Snuggles but then I discovered that they are also called cavys! So now I'm thinking about calling him David in the Bible.(because Sue had one named Abraham because she knew of another pig named Moses).....Davy the Cavy! Justin says I should stick with Snuggles. So now his name will be Davy and his middle name will be Snuggles and his last name.....hmmmmmmm well since he is a framily pet which includes Sue, Me, Justin, and Tiff.......I guess his last name will have to be a combination of the last names in the house. I think Princely would be good! Yeah!!!! So, now you have it, our Cavy is Davy Snuggles Princely! Is that weird or what??????!!!!!! It's weird enough to be a part of this household! Mr. Princely will fit right in with the rest of us! I have a Boston Terrier with a French name. Her name is Mimi Cheri. We have a poodle/terrier named Whyzer (pronounced wheezer) and he doesn't wheeze! He Yaps!!!!! See, the pig fits right in! It's perfect!!!!!! Now I have to discuss it with the rest of the framily! I'll let you know if it sticks. (Just between us.......It's going to take some crafty convincing!) Okay I've convinced Justin. Now it's time to work on Sue and Tiffany! Wow talk about putting your thoughts down in writing!

Sunday, January 05, 2003

Sunday...Church Day

YAY! It was soooooooo good to be in church again. I miss it soooooooooo much over the holidays. Every year it's the same for those of us in retail. Work every Sunday from Thanksgiving through Christmas. I love the "rush" of the shopping season and all the sales, but the part about missing worship service stinks. I miss it a lot and my walk suffers a bit.

Today was great. Back in my seat. Met a new couple too! I make it a point to find somebody new each week and introduce myself and learn about them. It's the Northbrook way! We are challenged to reach out to people and establish relationships. Everyone gets invited to join us again for a service and possibly connect with a SaLT group. There's no "push" on people, but we do inform about what Northbrook has to offer. We are a church that looks for hurting hearts and attempts to give those hearts a place to heal and a place to find God. We are about helping people in need and the only way to find out who needs is to communicate and ask people about themselves. It's an awesome thing to have a biblically functioning church! God's Presence is felt so strong there...He is so awesome! From day one I felt Him at Northbrook. He does some awesome things through the humble people here. I thank you Father for Northbrook Church and all my brothers and sisters who minister to me through that church! Woooooohoooooooooo!

After church we had a "reunion" of SaLT with WaLT...and Tom. This is the SaLT group that got "dissolved" when we had to make room on the schedule for New Testament Survey class at Northbrook University. It is a bummer that we were "dissolved" because we have relationships established and frankly...I miss those people! The other groups were able to reschedule their meeting times, but our situation was a unique one because Walt and Karen live over an hour away from the church. Getting together outside of the normal meeting time isn't easy with them living so far away. We are still going to attempt to meet once a month or so though. I hope it works out. Our reunion lunch was fun, but Walt wasn't able to make it. He is in a lot of pain from a mystery illness that causes his jaw to hurt bad. It is not TMJ, so he goes in for tests tomorrow.

After lunch, we came back to the house and I played around with the Women's Newsletter that I am now working on. It's fun! Tonight we then met with our other SaLT group. Another group of people I love! We are studying worship right now and discussed stifling the Spirit of God. It made for interesting discussion and as always we laughed a lot and learned a lot too! I love my SaLT groups!

More on worship later...maybe on my days off. I have 2 more this week! Wooooohoooooooooooo!

Thursday, January 02, 2003

Reflections and Resolutions

Author: Katie

On December 31, 2002.........last year, I spent the evening with my church family in the Gushee home. Together we shared the blessings and struggles of the previous year and discussed some things that we'd like to accomplish in 2003. I love my family and I can't think of a better way to bring in the new year. Because I have had so many blessings this year, I couldn't share them all. But, I can blog them!!!!!!!! So here it is (not necessarily in the order of importance).................

My church family and the fellowship and love between all of us.
My family here at home...Sue and the kids.
Finishing my first year back to school with a 3.6 average.
Being able to go to school.
Reading the Bible from cover to cover with Sue!!!
The road trip to Ohio and meeting another mentor of Sue's!
My friend, Mandy who kept my kids while Sue and I went on vacation.
The women's retreat and meeting Sandra Givens.......both changed my life.
Sandra Givens, who worked so hard with me to get me through algebra.
Scott Stookey who tutored me in biology.
Dinner with Sandra Givens in which God's presense was truly there.
The secret surprise for next Christmas.....sorry can't tell.
The trip to the Women of Faith Conference! THAT WAS GREAT!
Thanksgiving at the Gushees!!!!!! What an awesome time that was! I love that family!
The weekends the kids had with the Gushees
My lunches with Jeanie Gushee
The annual Covenant Renewal Banquet at Northbrook! I don't think I've ever had so much fun or laughed so hard at church!
Singing with the Northbrook Choir.
Joining the praise team at church!
Seeing the gift my daughter has by watching her perform interpretive movement at church.
Seeing the gift my daughter has by watching her sing with the ensemble and performing in "The Best Christmas Pagent Ever" with the Jackson Theatre Guild.
The smile I have on my face as I remember all my blessings.
Justin recieving the drum set from perfect strangers as a gift.
Watching Justin use that gift and God given talent as he played in the Christmas concert with the band from school.
Paul and Brian coming to do repairs on our house.
Harry dropping his own home to come and fix our broken storm door.
All of the help and love received from Harry and Paula
Having the opportunity to do something for the Jackson's who have done so much for us.
Working with Janet Jackson at Curves.
Going to lay hands at Betty Hopper's house
Singing Christmas carols to Betty.
Snow on Christmas Eve.
The gift of Christmas that came from Sue which provided for my kids to have an awesome Christmas.
Taking a basket of food to church and delivering those baskets to the needy.
Cherub participating in the basket delivery.
Being blessed by being on the giving end of the baskets this year only to go home with two baskets myself.
The learning and growing I received at Northbrook this year.
The visit at Mom's that went so well.
Answered prayer regarding Mom.
Answered prayer regarding Betty.
Every meal.
Every morning I woke up in my home.
The fact that it's snowing.......RIGHT NOW! WOOOHOOO! I LOVE SNOW! IT'S 4:09 PM AND IT'S SNOWING!!!!
I could go on forever so I guess I will stop here for now.

Now, for the New Year.......

I want to read through the Bible again.
I really hope that I'll improve my eating and exercise habits. So far it hasn't happened!
I want to write a book
I want to write out a new version of my testimony.
I want to learn how to be a better parent and spend more quality time with my family
There's more but my kids are home now so, it's time to go!
I hope to blog something more interesting later.

I think I might blog about the red rash and blue bruise......
Happy New Year!