Apr 30, 2008

What I have learned...

Today ends the 30 day fast that we started on April 1st. We challenged our church to a 30 day fast. We challenged them to hunger and thirst for more of God, to press in when things got tough and to pray harder than they have ever prayed. To dive into the Word of God and truly seek more of Him.

Sean and I chose the Daniel Fast. We could have gotten very strict but we didn't. We gave up snacking, caffeine (me), meat and diary. The most dairy we had was cheese on veggie sandwiches. We allowed ourselves whole wheat bread occasionally. Was it easy..NO! Was it worth it...most definitely! I have craved chocolate and meat. Yes you can crave meat! Would I do it again, most definitely!

There are so many things that I have learned over the last 30 days. Or should I say God allowed me to see. I was fasting for more of God in my life, that He would drawn me nearer and shed light on things I need to work on and let go, for healing of my knees and my health, for direction and open doors for Kristofer's evaluations for autism and for a mighty move of the Holy Spirit in our church. This is what I can see happened this month through our fast; we now have the direction and open doors for Kristofer, YEA!!! We are starting to see the Holy Spirit moving more in our church services...YEA!!!

The biggest thing I have seen these past 30 days is what the Lord is doing in me. You see, I have always been a controlling type of person. Not in controlling of others but in situations. I do not like change, unless I know the outcome, unless I can control the outcome. I have a fear of the unknown. Now don't get me wrong I completely trust the Lord but the fear of the unknown always stops me from doing certain things. Such as seeking the autism eval. for Kristofer. But also in health matters for myself. I guess the Lord has been working on me for about 9 months now on that one.

Case in point, my left knee. I injured in twisting and falling down some stairs at home in Florida about 3 years ago. I put off going to the doctor and when I did I didn't follow the directions to seek counsel from an Orthopedic Surgeon. Now to be honest money and no insurance play a part in that but had I followed the docs orders I would not be where I am today. I got the results of the MRI on my left knee...complex meniscus tear in two places as well as a popliteal cyst and other problems. I could have had it fixed and not been in pain for the last 3 almost 4 years but the fear of the unknown and no insurance stopped me from pursuing medical attention. Now I am facing surgery to fix this and hoping that the damage is not extensive...we shall find out on the 8th.

In the last 30 days the Lord has shown me there are some things I need to let go of from the past (of which I will not discuss here). But also that I have got to face the unknown and tackle the health issues that I have. So I am going for a physical in the morning. I have not had a true physical in well probably since I was a child. Oh I went to the doctor when I was pregnant with all of our kids and have been going to the doctor for my knee but I have not gone for a true physical and had the blood work that I need to have. Am I worried, yes you betcha. But am I ready to face what ever surfaces and get healthy...yes! So tomorrow I face the unknown and face it ready and armed. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "Plans to prosper you and not harm you plans to give you a future and hope." I am standing on that promise tonight. I am believing that God has ordained this time and place for me to face the unknown, face my fears and deal with what ever surfaces with His strength.

I have learned more than just this but for now this is what I will share. Oh and for those that care...I have let go of 16 lbs since Jan 1. YEA! This is exciting considering up until March 18th I was not allowed to do any exercise and have two bum knees! Thank you God for helping me face my fears and for helping me to let go of the weight of many things!

Apr 25, 2008

New Life!

Spring brings much more than April showers (or earthquakes) or May flowers to our home today. We have a neighbor's cat, Taz who is a beautiful long hair grey and white cat. He is gorgeous and I think he thinks he lives here. We open a door and he runs in. We probably haven't helped that much because we do feed him. Which the neighbor doesn't seem to mind. Needless to say Taz has a sister that is also grey and white but is short haired. Snowbell is very pregnant and today she came over to visit and look for food. I was enjoying our beautiful weather and sitting on the porch in the warm spring sun when she came and layed down next to me.

This was remarkable to me because Snowbell is sorta skittish with strangers. The kids were all riding their bikes and eventually ended up on the porch with me. As I was petting Snowbell I realized there was a wet spot that hadn't been there before. I thought it was odd and made a joke with the kids that Snowbell had peed herself. But as I was petting her I realized immediately that she had not peed herself but was in labor! I lifted her tail to see a tiny foot and a small tail emerging. I got the kids to all sit and quiet down. Sara, Jaron, a neighbor girl, and I watched as Snowbell had her first baby right on our porch.

This is not the baby!

I have seen it before but the kids hadn't. Sara was in awe, "Oh Mommy, she says, "Look how cute!" Then it was "oh gross what is Snowbell eating, ewe she pooped the baby out!" Kris was so excited he was coming unglued. Then he saw blood on the kittens two feet and he just about freaked, "Snowbell is eating the baby!" I calmly explained what was going on. They watched at Snowbell cleaned the kitten off and listened to it meow for the first time. The looks on our children's faces were priceless. They were smiling from ear to ear with big eyes all glued on that baby.

Once Snowbell had cleaned that baby off it was time to scatter. She picked that baby up and immediately the kids thought she was going to hurt it and eat it. ( Neighbor dog had puppies and killed a couple) But she was so gentle as she positioned that kitten in her mouth and ran home. I am sure she had at least another 3-4 babies earlier this evening. We made sure to let our friend know that Snowbell had started having babies. She was as surprised that she had the first one on our porch as much as we were. She told Jaron she would check on her in the shed. That is where she had been nesting I guess.

On our porch spring brought new life all to the amazement of our children. What a glorious way to end the day!

Apr 22, 2008

You took my place!

One day, a man went to visit a church. He got there early, parked his car and got out. Another car pulled up near the driver got out and said, ' I always park there! You took my place!' The visitor went inside for Sunday School, found an empty seat and sat down. A young lady from the church approached him and stated, 'That's my seat! You took my place!' The visitor was somewhat distressed by this rude welcome, but said nothing. After Sunday School, the visitor went into the sanctuary and sat down. Another member walked up to him and said, ' That's where I always sit! You took my place!' The visitor was even more troubled by this treatment, but still He said nothing. Later as the congregation was praying for Christ to dwell among them, the visitor stood up, and his appearance began to change. Horrible scars became visible on his hands and on his sandaled feet. Someone from the congregation noticed him and called out, 'What happened to you?' The visitor replied, as his hat became a crown of thorns, and a tear fell from his eye, 'I took your place.'
Thank you Jesus for taking my place? He took yours too, have you asked Him to forgive you, to be your Saviour? Now is the time!

Apr 20, 2008


It is definitely spring here in IL. So many trees waking up and flowers blooming. Reaking havoc on many allergies. I have a few pictures I want to share. My favorite tree is this one that has small purple pink flowers. You can be looking across the landscape as you drive into town and amongst the tree laden areas see just a hint of purple and it will stand out among the rest. I have added a few pictures of that tree too. We as Christians need to be like that small tree. Show off our true colors for Christ and stand out for Him! We are called to be a light in this world...unfortunately many of us are just blending in with the other trees! I personally want to be like this one tree...standing out and shining my best for Christ!

Happy Spring everyone!
See how it stands out amongst the rest! This is what Christians need to be doing...not blending in with the world!

This is a red bud! Same kind of tree that we have that was injured in the ice storms.

Apr 18, 2008

Birthday Party

I had to wait to post these pictures of Kristofer and our celebration. Yes for those that are interested in knowing today we will always remember that on his special day we experienced the shocks and rumblings of our first earthquake. Although the kids slept through the larger one that woke Sean and I, they did experience the shaking of the second on that took place at 10:15 this morning. They were at school and they got to practice the safety measures for a earthquake. Kristofer told me he did not like the shaking or the alarm at school...too loud he said but it was fun to practice for bad weather! So glad his teacher made it fun for him and his classmates.

Enjoy the pictures!

Happy Birthday!!!

Today my little man Kristofer turns 6! I can't believe he is that old! The first 4 years of his life were so hard on him. The poor guy had so many ear infections and ear surgeries that I have lost count. Thankfully something happened when he turned four. It was like over night he just stopped having ear infections. He has had possibly 4 in the last 2 years compared to 9 months of nonstop infection in his ears when he was just 7 mo old.
So much has changed for him since we started OT and Speech therapy. In fact we got a letter from his OT last week telling us how well he has improved since the beginning of the year! Oh he still has his quirks and difficulties in class but he has such a good support team at school and a teacher that really has done her best to help him this year! Thank you Ms Robertson!!! Earlier this week Kristofer got up and immediately said, "Just 5 days till my birthday!" Now I haven't been counting down the days for him but apparently he is. In fact on Wed morning he looked up at me smiling really big, "Just two more days mommy just two!" I am so happy for him to be this excited about turning 6. I over heard him telling Eli, "When I am 6 I will be a man!" Oh baby, slow down! I am not ready for that what so ever!

Kristofer is the most fun loving kid. He forgives instantly and doesn't just say "I am sorry" he truly forgives and forgets. He never holds a grudge. Too bad more people weren't like our Kris. He loves to laugh and some of the strangest things make him laugh hysterically. He has a memory beyond words. You can remember the finest details of events, movies and stories. If he is interested in something it is to the fullest extent! I mean he will live, eat and breath that item or topic. Such as when he was 3-4 his favorite things were dinosaurs. It was all he could think about. So we let him, he already knew so much about dinosaurs and we still have NO idea how, and that was before we borrowed movies and books from the library about them. He still loves dinosaurs but right now his main thing is robots! He loves to draw and create his own. He does his very best to get down to the smallest detail and will tell you all about them. We gave him legos as a present today and the first thing he did was create a robot!

Somethings come very easy for him and others do not. We are slowly learning that he has to hear it to learn it. If you read him a book he can tell you the story just from memory. In fact at first, I thought he was reading but it was just that he heard the story and has it memorized. Kris deals with SPD on a daily basis some days he struggles to even get dressed and other days he needs to have the heaviest of clothes on. (Do you see the theme in the pictures...no shirts!) Some days he is quiet and other days he is like a fast moving train that can't be stopped. Most days he has terrible times of not focusing and many days he spends long moments in his own world. I asked him once why he likes to stay in his own world....he told me "So I don't have to look at people and so I don't have to talk to them." He has told me a few times that he wants friends but is scared of them. He doesn't know a stranger at all and loves babies. He is the gentlest child I have ever seen when it comes to babies. He is a big teddy bear, always has a smile and sees the world as perfect as long as everything goes according to his plan.

Kristofer is a special child. He brings so much joy and laughter to our home as well as strife when his routine is out of order. Everyone that meets him falls in love with our Kris! Without him our family would be incomplete!

Kristofer, We love you just the way you are. Nothing in the world would/could change that! We are so proud of what you have accomplished despite the struggles you have faced. You are a remarkable boy! We love you!



Mommy and Daddy!

Apr 15, 2008

Fruit, Fruit & More Fruit

Now doesn't that look so yummy! I have always loved fruit and a variety of veggies, I have!
We are on this 30 day Daniel Fast and to be honest I thought it was going to be super hard but I just don't miss the meat. I do how ever miss my coffee!

I usually only have just one cup but I savor that cup! But I am willing to sacrifice it for another 15 days to see the Lord do a miracle in our church and in our lives! I am believing in a total healing for my knees. Today I went and had another MRI done, this time on my left knee, or what I affectionately call my Florida knee since that is where I originally injured it. I am a bit apprehensive to find out the results. I have looked at the films and have no idea
what to look for. I even tried comparing the films from my right knee to the left. Let's just say that made things worse!
The Lord has been speaking things to me about a variety of things the last 15 days. I look forward to what else He shows me. Sean and I truly want to see a mighty
move of God's power in our church. We have a few people that are truly in need of a miracle and healing in our church. This past week has been tough. Satan truly does not want to
see God's manifest power in our church. He has attacked so many people, the ones we know that are fasting! Isn't just like him to try to distract us from focusing more on God! What a weak
little whipper snapper he is. Just made me want to focus more on God!
I know there are a few other churches fasting right now too! For those that are fasting for a miracle (Michele-believing with you!) or just fasting for some other reason...stay focused, stay in the word and stay in prayer!

Apr 11, 2008

Cool Tool Winner

Our Kristofer is a "Cool Tool" winner! So whats a "Cool Tool" it is something the schools have come up with. Every month the school give the kids a word to focus on. In March it was "Appreciation". Through out the month the kids are watched by the teachers and staff to see if they are demonstrating the cool tool. Sometime in March Kris was observed being appreciative. At the end of the month they have a school assembly and recognize each student that has used the cool tool. For the month of Feb. Jaron was a "Cool Tool" winner...unfortunately we did not receive his picture.

Anyway, during the school assembly each child that has earned the Cool Tool ribbon has their name put in a bowl to win prizes....KRIS WON! Jaron shared that as soon as he saw the prizes and heard Kristofer's name called he knew immediately that Kris would pick the bear! Kristofer is a bear lover. He just loves them!

So I wanted to share the picture we were given. It's not the best quality but you can tell he is happy!

My Little Princess

Mommy and Sara getting ready for Aunt Jeanette's wedding!

My little girl is growing up!
The other day she came and brought me my make up and said make me beautiful like you mommy! What a way to melt your mommy's heart! I was looking in the mirror, had color processing on my head (gotta hide those gray hairs), had a cucumber facial mask on and she says, "Make me beautiful like you Mommy!" What a sweetie!

So she has been a helper lately, loves to mop my floor even if it has been mopped. I just wanted to take time today to share some fun pictures of my little girl. She has been into picture taking lately...posing with everything imaginable...SO enjoy the pictures...

Sara the 1920's girl!

Judah just loves her Sara!

Sara and her favorite puppy

Apr 9, 2008

I am blessed!

I posted earlier today is my birthday....well for another 1 hr and 38 minutes. I have had a great day. Spent the afternoon with the love of my life, Sean. When we returned home and the kids returned from school we had a small party. The kids love cake! Kristofer says, "It's not a birthday unless there is cake!" So we have cake. He whispered in my ear, "Happy Birthday Mommy, I love you!" Which I have to share is the first time he has ever said "I love you!" Without being prompted, so that in itself was the best present I could ask for!

I have to share the "Love Letter" I received from the love of my life. Sean always tells me he loves me many times throughout the day. Even when we have argued he always makes sure to say those three little words. Well today he did it in a letter. He gave me "The Everyday Life Bible" with commentary, insights and devotionals by Joyce Meyer. Joyce Meyer is one of my absolute favorite writers and preachers! She always tells it straight and I have never found anything she says unbiblical. She is a true woman of God!
Anyway tucked in the card was a letter that Sean took time to write. With his permission I am going to share it here.

Happy Birthday Sweetheart!
When I bought this for your birthday, I remembered the first couple of years we were married...do you remember all the books we use to buy for each other? I remember when you got me "The Creeds of Christendom" for my birthday and I got you the Max Lucado Bible for your birthday. I know things have changed, er, slightly since that time, but my love for you hasn't and grows with each day! Buying this Bible for you reminds me of how "unchartered" our course was when we started our lives together and you're the only one who could ever be by my side for the journey!

I pray that God bless you on this special day, when He brought you into this world and set the course for you to meet some strange campus pastor from New York in Kentucky with his Mick Jagger imitation. Thank you for being a wonderful lover, friend, wife and mother, and for being my right hand in ministry and everything else! I could never live my life without you!!!

Happy Birthday Missy, and I love you!!!!

ok I know some of you that read my blog may wonder why I would share this personal love letter....well here is why. First off because it is so special to me...it was exactly what I needed to hear today. But most importantly because there are so many people out there going through divorces or are living in marriages that seem to be head in that direction. It is so important to communicate. It is so important to work at your marriage. It is not easy! There are so many life stresses that can affect your marriage. But when you stand before God and say your vows you are not just repeating after someone, you are making a covenant not only with your spouse but before God. Our marriage has seen many struggles, trials, and storms...but we have also seen a ton of laughter, joy, and peace. We are committed to each other, to God and to our family. We will do what ever we need to do to stick to that covenant.

One way we do that is to make sure we work through our struggles together. We make sure to put each other first after God. We make time to spend time together: talking, laughing, praying, in intimate moments and just being together. We also do our best to tell each other how much we love each other in little ways and big. I am so blessed to have Sean in my life! He has blessed me with 5 wonderful children (one is an angel). He is my best friend, lover, husband, support, my safe place and a wonderful father of our kids. I am blessed and I am so grateful for God's constant reminder of that!

Today is my birthday! I have to say thank you to my parents. I was an "accident" but God had a purpose for me! My mom was very young when she had me and could have very easily given me up for adoption. Had abortions been legal at the time I was conceived I could have been dismissed as just a fetus. So THANK YOU mom and dad for sacrificing everything and raising me. I thought about writing down 38 things I have learned in my life in the 38 years I have been alive but decided to just focus on a few things....

1. Life is precious!
2. My family is everything to me!
3. Being a mom is a precious gift from God, even when I am stressed, frustrated and just plain
4. God IS my strength and hope, without Him I am nothing!
5. There is always tomorrow to accomplish what you weren't able to finish today, take time to
spend with your family first!

Those are just a few things that I have learned. Money, power and prestige are nothing if you have no one to stand by you when life's storms come. What I have learned the most is that family and friends are more important than money, power and prestige! God always comes first but He blesses us with family and friends! I read another blog almost daily.... http://www.lifetimeintimateportraitds.blogspot.com/ . Deanna Shrodes is a very gifted writer and co-pastor at Northside Assembly in Tampa, Fl. She is one of my good friends, Michele's, pastor. Anyway she posted a YouTube video of Madea and I love it!

I just want to thank all of my roots! For the friends that are my roots I am blessed to call you my friends! Love you!

Apr 8, 2008

It's a Wood Floor!

Every month from Sept to Oct our church takes the kids to the local skating rink. The kids look forward to this night all month. A couple of months ago Sara went for the first time and fell in love with skating. She looks so cute with her little skirt, head band and skates. It sorta reminds me of times past. Last night was Eli's first skating experience. He skates at home with his slip on skates so we thought he would understand that he would be skating like he does at home. But that is where we were wrong.

He was so excited about going that he talked about it all day. As soon as we got there we realized that Eli was completely let down. The poor guy thought he was going to skate on ice. Not exactly sure why he thought this but he was completely let down. Once we got his skates and he looked out on the skate floor he turned and says, "It's a wood floor!" He then proceeds to ask where the ice was. He was so sad that it wasn't ice. I still can't figure out why he thought he would be on ice...

He was overwhelmed with the amount of kids that were there. I was a little surprised myself. Normally we will see a few teens but last night we had quite a few teens there from other churches. It is a nice night at the skate rink. The owners play all Christian music so there is no need to worry about what the kids are listening to.

He spent half the time just watching or in the game room. At the end when he was told we had 30 mins before we would leave he says, "Please put my skates back on I want to try skating again" By that time most of the older kids were off the floor. He looks at me and says, "I think I want to try that wood floor," and off he went. He did finally make it around the whole rink twice. He was not so happy at the end, he wanted to stay. Isn't it just like all kids, once they get comfortable with a new situation it's time to leave.
In a couple of weeks the twins will get to go skating with a bunch of preschoolers. The preschool program they are part of offers a variety of field trip experiences. From making pizzas at a local pizza place to skating they do a lot of things...mostly to encourage parental involvement. So they will get to go skating with their classmates. Personally I am looking forward to getting to know some of the other moms of the kids class. It will be a great opportunity for me as well. I unfortunately did not take my camera but plan to the next time we go and I will share those pictures then.

Apr 2, 2008

More, more and more...

If you're a parent you know that no matter how many toys your child has he/she will want more. Every time either Sean or I come home from the store the kids all ask, "Did you get me something....Did you get me a toy....Candy?" No matter how many times we tell them no they will always ask. Our kids are very persistent. Sometimes when they least expect it we will surprise them with something small or just a treat such as ice cream bars or something we don't usually buy. Isn't it a shame that we are not more like the kids...or maybe I am like them. I sometimes feel like I am the child who is constantly being told no. Then out of the blue God will answer a petition that I have lifted up.

"Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be open to you. For everyone who asks receives and he who seeks finds and to him who knocks it will be opened." Matt 7:7 & 8

This happened this week. We took Sean's car to the mechanic. I was sure it was going to cost us more than $600 to fix. Based on what I knew the prices were for the parts and for the mechanics hourly wage ( I was guessing his price). Sean was thinking it was going to be less than I did. So I just simply prayed as we dropped off the car, Lord please keep this bill below $600. So yesterday the mechanic called and there was a little more work to be done than we expected....my heart just about landed in my throat as I over heard Sean on the phone. "Lord please keep it below $600..." I thought. Sean comes in the living room and says I have to call him back, he says because of the extra pieces he has to order its going to cost with labor $350. I think I picked my jaw up off the floor. Sean was upset...why he thought it would be less than that I am not sure I thought the price was great! So God just dropped in to show me that He was listening! Thank you Lord!
This brings me to this...we as His children need to not just ask, seek and knock like spoiled brats! We need to come to Him as His children and ask, seek and knock trusting that He knows what is best. Regardless of His answer we must trust that He knows what is best for us and accept the answer. It is when you do not get an answer that you should be even more persistent. I have never know Him to change His mind, when I have been given a "NO" I have never seen it changed. No matter what kind of pleading I may have done a no is a no! But what I have learned is to be persistent in seeking for that answer when I do not get a "no'!
So with the leading of the Holy Spirit Sean and I have petitioned the church to 30 day fast. A time to set apart ourselves and ask, seek and knock. To dive into His word and seek His face. To hunger for the Lord and a might move of the Holy Spirit in our church and most importantly in our lives.
I am so hungry for a miracle in my life. I need His healing touch. I need Him to step in and take the pain of arthritis away. I need Him to step in a heal my knees. Yes I had surgery and yes it is healing well. But I have another knee that is injured and is having a lot of difficulty right now due to the added stress that my other knee is being protected from. I am in constant pain with that knee when I walk or even try to sleep. My fear is another major surgery. So I am petitioning the Lord to heal me! The last 3 months have been very long, draining and emotionally exhausting. Being a mom to 4 very active children and not being able to keep up with them has been even more tiring. I need this healing. But more than that I need more of God in my life.
Yes I'm a pastor's wife but more importantly I am a just another Christian. Being a Pastor's wife does not make me immune to the world or to daily life struggles. In fact I think it adds to life's stresses...Do I measure up, Am I doing my best for the Lord, Am I a help or hindrance to my husband, I worry about what church members think about me and about how my children behave in services...just constant things to think about...All trying to do my best for the Lord and support my husband as the pastor.
So I am not perfect, I need more of God and more of the Holy Spirit in my life. I have some questions I need answers to and some things I want to see God do in me, my husband, in my family and in my church. So Sean and I personally have embarked on this 30 adventure and are following the Daniel Fast. Thankfully I "love" veggies and fruits. What I miss is my coffee in the morning. But I will savor the Holy Spirit's presence as I seek the Lord in the morning instead of savor the rich aroma of coffee brewing.
I am sure as the Lord reveals things I will share...until then...

Apr 1, 2008


In honor of all my friends that deal with autism daily...
May God grant you the wisdom on how to deal with your
situation, may He empower you with strength and help
you stand up for the rights of your child!