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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

when there is so much to say...

sometimes life can come up on you in a mean way.
sometimes you start losing your focus.
sometimes you let feelings get the best of you...

even though you know that life is not easy
even though you know that the only thing you need to focus on is the eternal
even though you know that your heart is deceitful above all things.

i go back and forth with what to say on my blog sometimes.
because i want to be open and real.
i also will never ever use my blog as an excuse to "vent"
i will never use it to preach to a particular person, or use it to even imply anything about a specific person.

so i try to be...generic, i guess.

with that being said.

i am a real person.
i do have real feelings, and even though i am not your typical girl in that i am not a crier...generally.
i am a typical girl in that i do feel like crying sometimes!

in the past 2 weeks i have cried more than normal.
and it feels...weird.

i think that when you are hurt, you tend to justify what you are "allowed" to do.
you start feeling like you don't deserve this, so you will do...fill in the blank.
and that is where i have felt myself starting down the path of.

BUT..i am fortunate to have people in my life that don't let me go far down that path.

i got a text yesterday from one of my homegirls that said
rachelle...don't be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. praying for you today.

i got a phone call from my brother who laid down the law.
i am holding on to peace. it's mine to possess. i just need to accept and claim it.

my husband, my parents and my siblings, my niece and my friends have all encouraged me to not allow these attacks to get to me.

see...the thing that is hard for me is not the KNOWING part.
i know that satan is working overtime on me
i know that he is threatened by the fact that we are having a huge amount of kids come to the porch every day where we are demonstrating God's love
i know that he is threatened by the fact that we are starting a pregnancy center,
i know he wants to destroy my friendships, my marriage, my life.


sometimes knowing is not the problem.

it's claiming God's promises...

to give peace
to forgive ME so i can forgive OTHERS
to give me grace to love
to give me strength to go on in spite of how hurt i might feel
to give me the power to not excuse and justify my own sin
to give me the ability to be slowwww to speak
to give something to Him, then walk away and just trust Him

he promises me so much.
so this morning i woke up...

and i chose life.

deutereonomy 30:19 says

Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life...!

see, it's my choice! 
that is amazing in and of itself.
God is giving me a choice. he is not forcing this on me, even though he KNOWS what is best. he lets me choose.

i can either have a blessing or a curse.
and for some reason. 
so many times...i choose a curse! i choose death!

i don't want to do that.

i will choose to follow and obey no matter how i am feeling

i will choose to trust even when everything inside of me is fighting to do the opposite

i will choose to hope even when i am in pain

i will choose life!

because i don't want to look back at my life in 5 years and think...was it worth it? was holding on to bitter feelings worth it? did it make my life better?

because i already know the answer to those questions.

no! it won't be worth it! 
it won't make my life better.

following God's way is always the better choice.

so today.

i choose life.
i choose blessings.

what are you gonna choose?

Monday, March 28, 2011

it's how she rolls

so saturday, i was in the kitchen.

my mom comes walking briskly through the room, and goes and gets her coat on.

i say...where are you going?

she says...ry and aj really wanted someone to play lacrosse with them.

how many grandmothers do this??

yep. that is just how my mom rolls.

just to let everyone know...i had already played twice with them...

but i guess there's just something different about playing with nanny! :)

Sunday, March 27, 2011


so those of you who are so super godly are thinking that this post is going to be about being a strong chrstian leader, right?

not following the crowd,

being a person that others would want to follow.

well - sorry to disappoint, but...

i am seriously crazy about my "followers"

adam thinks i'm nuts, but whenever i see that i have a new follower, i am like a kid on chrsitmas morning.

no lie.

i am so excited to think that someone would actually be interested enough in what i have to say, that they would follow my blog!

so thank you.

thank you to all my followers,

whoever you are

wherever you are

whether you comment or not.

i am thankful that i can be a small part of your life.  :)

oh, and if you want to follow me...
by all means, let me experience the feelings of christmas morning all over again! ha

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

what do you hear in the morning?

i don't know about you, but when i wake up in the morning...
i don't think 10 seconds go by before i realize that i am thinking about 50 different things all at the same time.
it's like i've picked up right where i've left off the night before!

sometimes it's thinking about having to go grocery store,
a conversation that i had the day before
a conversation i imagine myself having with someone 
the list of things i need to do...blah, blah, blah

but i don't really think i've ever heard anything.

i found this verse to be very interesting when i read it today.

Let me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning; 
For I trust in You; Teach me the way in which I should walk; 
For to You I lift up my soul.
Psalm 143:8

let me hear your loving kindness?
what does that mean?
how can i hear it?

then i was reminded of the verse in Psalm 63:6 that says

When I remember you on my bed, 
I meditate on You in the night watches.

maybe this is part of it?
i need to go to sleep meditating and remembering all that God is to me.
all that He has done for me.
and when i fall asleep focusing on Him, it may affect how i wake up?

i'm not saying i know that for sure, 

but i am just saying...maybe.

so tomorrow morning, i am going to try something.
i am going to wake up...

and listen.

just listen.

i want to hear God's lovingkindness.

i NEED to hear God's lovingkindness.

just to keep it real here...it's been a rough week.

in a lot of ways, in which i do not choose to divulge right now.

just rough.

but one thing i know.

i trust in my God.

so tonight?

 i will meditate on His power, His love, His forgiveness, His grace, His blessings...

and when i wake up tomorrow morning

i will listen to hear what my Father is saying.

i can't wait.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


friday we needed to get away.
just the 4 of us.
sometimes ya just need to do that, ya know?

we headed to the salem boys and girls club which has family swim in the afternoon for a couple hours
and it only costs 5 dollars a family!

worth it?
i think so!

we had to be back to open the porch at 2:30, but it was such great, refreshing time away.
i see that happening again!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

a few things from this week...

thursday morning when i came downstairs, this is what i saw

it made me smile.

when i looked at what he was reading, it reminded me of something.
i heard that someone from town had "warned" another parent that during kids club at the porch,
they teach the kids about the Bible.
let's see...teaching kids to be honest, obedient and respectful to parents, self-controlled...

thanks for the warning!
i will definitely be on the look-out for those results from my kids when they're home!

while riley was reading, aj was having his piano lessons...

he is doing fantastic!

then we worked on awana...
i just love this picture of aj.
he looks like my little boy still - which when he stands almost eye to eye with me, it's hard to see that!

ry could play legos all day and half the night, so he played and i quizzed him on his verses at the same time
he is amazing at designing and building - it is so fun to watch what he creates!

and i can't help but smile when i see aj laughing like this.

that's all for tonight.
more tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

who was jeoshophat's wife?

i am so convinced that God has a plan for my boys lives...
a plan to give them a hope and a future!
it excites me to just think about it...
to think about what they will do when they are older!

i am also convinced that satan has a plan as well.
his plan?
not so nice.
he takes everything that God has created as good and enjoyable -
and ruins it.
he makes it ugly.
makes it painful.
makes it looks like he invented it, and that GOD is the one who ruins everything!

he is such a liar.

i am not typically a worrier.
i really don't see myself as the type that stresses and worries about things - 

as a rule.

but i have started to think that maybe i am worrying about my boys.
about their futures.
about their choices.
i realized something tonight.
(you have probably all realized this years ago, maybe i'm just a little slow!)

the worrying that I am doing about MY boys is a little bit um...off.
do you see where i'm going with this?
i am putting too much emphasis on I and MY

The emphasis is supposed to be on My Father!!

it's pretty amazing when you think about it!
i can not be trusting on my parenting abilities, or my decisions or my anything!
i change my mind too much, 
and i eat too much sugar.

oh, that last part was a little confession thrown in there to keep you awake.
i seriously do eat too much sugar though.
but that lack of self-control is for another post! :)

i have done a lot of studies on my own trying to find information about mothers in the Bible

i love reading about David, about Daniel, about Timothy, about these men who were just heroes. these men who lived godly lives, and accomplished so much for God.
but i want to know about their moms! 
what kind of moms were they?
were they sober and serious?
were they goofy and laid back?
did they care about clean houses and whole grains?
did they let their boys eat sugar after every dinner?
(how am i on to sugar again??)
but seriously, there is so much left to the imagination when it comes to these moms!

i just read today about King Jehoshaphat.
he was a good king. he did what was right in the eyes of God.
which is saying something. 
these dudes from the old testament, i'm telling ya.
one king will be all good...then all of a sudden, the son of the next guy is like a beast!
anyways, in 2 chronicles it says that jehoshapaht's mother's name was azubah, and she was the daughter of shilhi.

it then says...


like. nothing at all.
i wonder why they even tell us her name?
who was she?
what was she like?

and here's where i start going down the fearful path.
see...jehoshaphat was good. 
but his son?
ended up being terrible!
so was it jehoshophat's wife?

who was jehoshophat's wife?

she's not even mentioned in the Bible!
was it her fault?
i mean...the guy had 7 sons. was she too stressed to parent properly? ha!
for real. that's a lot of boys in one tent!

so - what about these people who are godly...
then have kids who get married and end up bad?
and i'm referring to people in the Bible here, although obviously it applies to today too.

so i start thinking, what if what i'm doing now is all for naught? 
and the boys end up making bad decisions? 
i want to be like azubah (minus the odd name) and not like little-miss-no-name-jehoshopatty-wife

that's when it hit me about the "me" and "i" thing.

i am responsible before God to follow his commands when it comes to my parenting.

Then HE is responsible for blessing and leading and directing my kids.

it's finding the balance between 

God's gonna do whatever He wants, so i'm just gonna sit back and relax


i am going to resist the feeling to be lazy right now, and be the kind of mom i think God wants me to do...even when it's easier not to.

parenting is such hard work.

it's easier to give in...

at the time.

but it's better to be consistent...

in the long run.

trusting completely in God is an amazing thing.
it's knowing that he is in control and that he has a plan that gives me the freedom to just relax!

i want to be an amazing example to my kids of what a godly mom looks like.
i want to show them how to love God and serve others.
so i will keep working. 
i will keep trusting.
and know...

God promises that he will bless the house of the righteous.
it's a promise.
God never breaks His promise.

i am going to be offering a ladies class on 
"Intentional Living"
it will be broken into 6 weeks of classes, 
discussing the different areas of life we need to be intentional about.
i would love to have anyone living nearby join me!
they will be sunday mornings from 9:30-10:30 at my house.
please let me know if you are interested, and i will let you know when they will begin.


i am behind in editing.
to say the very least.
i realized that i haven't even finished editing the pictures from when my sister and callen were here!
so i am sharing a few of their visit.

he is so adorable, and i wish i was holding him right now!
i can't wait to get my hands on my beautiful niece lilla for her 1 year pictures in june,
and for my nephew micah for a newborn shoot!!
i am so beyond blessed to have such an amazing brother and sisters (and in-laws!) who are raising godly families.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Be Doing

i can't believe i haven't blogged all week long!
it's been a very busy week. even right now, i just looked up and saw a blokus game on the floor, with a crumpled up shirt on top of it. i see a laundry basket full of clean clothes, i see legos on the couch and i'm thinking...why am i blogging right now?
well, my homegirls have been asking for me - haha...no, but i seriously DO have homegirls. i am not even joking.
school has been...going...that's about it.
i know that next week will be better.
because i promised myself.
and i never break my promises to myself.
well...except when i decide that i won't have any sugar for the week,
but then, well...you know, someone will bring over some sugar. so what's a girl to do?
i then promise myself that i will start on monday.
so then of course, sunday becomes binge-day. because i have to get all the sugar out of the house before monday starts!

do not EVEN tell me that no one knows what i'm talking about.
you've been there. admit it.
so i don't feel like a total loser!

and this last paragraph describes my life.
just ask adam.
i can literally not finish one story at a time, because i am SO all over the place!!
where was i?
oh ya. school.
this week will be better.

the porch has been going great. we had over 20 kids in on wednesday which was awesome.
the boys are doing great.
i can never say enough how much i love being with them all the time.
i can not imagine my life without them.
sports-wise things are slowing down a little bit, which is nice.
basketball is over for ry, and aj just has one more game.
soccer is still going on and will until april.
they are loving it, and i love watching them.
and that is the boring, non-detailed summary of my life this week.

sometimes i start blogging in my head. then when life gets crazy, i don't have time to blog, and i have all these thoughts that just need to come out!!
so here is one of the things i have been thinking about.
it's just a little challenge for you.
here it is:
 I Chronicles 22:16 and 19a. ( i LOVE chronicles!!)

"Arise, therefore, and be doing..." 

that's it.
seriously. that's it.
get up.
and be doing.
be serving. be loving people. be compassionate. be joyfully giving.
what are you doing right now that will last beyond your life?
what are you doing that is going to make a difference for eternity?
if you say..um...i guess nothing.
that's ok.
but get up NOW
start NOW!

and verse 19
"Now set your heart and your soul to seek the Lord your God..."
you need to set your heart and your soul to seek Him!
make the decision now.
don't wait.
don't let yourself get depressed, run down and discouraged by your circumstances.
God has you where He does for a reason.
maybe you don't understand.
maybe you will someday, but maybe you never will!
it shouldn't stop you from setting your heart to seek God.

i had a great prayer time tonight.
i literally prayed, by name, for almost everyone i could think of.
i prayed for some people that they would seek the truth.
that they would find Jesus and let Him change their lives forever.
because HE does, you know.
i also prayed for some people who have hurt me.
it's an interesting thing..praying for people who have hurt you.
because you see, you can't be all catty and judgmental when you are talking to GOD!
try it sometime!
but back to my point...

maybe you're in a place where you can't serve in a ministry for one reason or another.
maybe you think you're too old.
maybe you think you're too young.
don't underestimate the power your prayers can have.
what a ministry that can be!
see, that's DOING!

and that is my rambling for the night.
but i have to give a picture.
because i love everything about this picture.
it's my little sister.
i love her face.
it makes me smile.
i love that she is next to the baby boy that we prayed so long for.

i am seriously missing my family tonight.
like seriously.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

basketball, soccer, no compromise and self-control

This has been a full week of sports for us.

AJ is in a basketball tournament that is in York...about a 45 minute drive for us.

He has been doing a great job, and his team is undefeated!

Today was the semi-finals, and he was mvp of the game!
He had 20 points and 12 boards.

We are so proud of him.
Not just because he is a beast on the court (in a good way)
but because he is self-controlled, and growing into a very godly young man.

With the win today, his team moves into the finals which will be played tomorrow (Sunday) morning at 10:15am.
We will be at church.
We decided when we were starting our marriage, that church would be a priority for us.
We won't back down from that.
Basketball is important, and AJ works really hard and plays very well.
But God is more important.

I heard adam explain it to AJ.
He told him that he had missed many games for the same reason when he was growing up.
He told him a lot of kids wouldn't understand, but that's ok.
God will always come first no matter what.
I loved hearing it,

Because it meant I didn't have to say it..
haha...just kidding, but I loved it because it reminded me that my husband has godly parents that decided that same thing when he was a kid.
They decided that church and God would come first.
(thank you so much! your commitment has benefited more than just you! it is being passed down from generation to generation!)
Adam lived it when he was growing up and he is now teaching it while he is raising his own boys.
And AJ said... "I know Dad. And I'm ok with it."
(I think it was harder on us than on him!!)

Prioritizing. Not compromising.
It's so important to teach that to our kids early on. The truth is? God is our life.
I want our kids to see parents that won't compromise...even when it might be easier to.
We won't compromise with sports over church
We won't compromise with lying over truth
We won't compromise with divorce over marriage.

They are seeing that it's possible in a world of broken promises, unfaithfulness,
and giving up when it's easier to just give up..

that they can stay faithful!

So that's what we will do.
Our feelings tell us it would make our son happy to let him skip and play the game.
God's Word (the basis of our lives) tells us that God will bless him more than we ever could!
Obedience always brings blessings!

enough on that soap box.

Ry had a soccer game at 2, and scored 6 goals.
My boys are so gifted, and I am really thankful!

Ry's team is called the hooligans, and this is one of his buddies from the team

Ry also makes me so proud.
He played a team today that was a really...um
rough team
(that's the nicest word I could think of)
I watched as the boys from the other team pushed, elbowed and kicked Riley.
even when he wasn't in the play sometimes!
But he showed great self-control.
He didn't push back
He didn't say a word.
He lived the verse that he memorized 2 years ago...

"I discipline my body, like an athlete. Training it to do what it should"

I am so thankful.

Now I have to go and figure out what's for dinner...

we have to leave for AJ's soccer game!

Friday, March 04, 2011

what is wrong with this crust?

this is what adam asked me at dinner tonight.

*side note. i had gotten home from bringing ry to basketball practice at 5:50, and the boys had to be at AWANA by 7.
nothing was ready for dinner yet.
so i made pizza dough really quick, without giving it enough time to rise

before i had the chance to start spouting off about how many meals i have made in my lifetime, he said.

i mean. it's kind of...



like YOU!

haha...i suddenly didn't feel the need to explain the reason for the shady dinner :)

i guess he's learned a lot after being married for so long!

that's my husband! 

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

tricky game time

the boys love family game nights.
so the other night i pulled out scrabble slam (which i believe came from
adam's wicked cool aunt)
and we had so much fun!

adam always makes everything more fun!

the best part is that even though it was a really fun game...

it's great for teaching how to spell!!!
i love when i can be teaching them...
and they are having so much fun they don't even realize it!! :)

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

i can believe this, but i can't believe that?

i realized something about myself last night.
i am so secure in my relationship with God...
meaning that i literally have no fear at all of death.
i know with no doubt in my mind, that when i die, i will be in heaven
with my Jesus.
i am so secure in it, that i don't ever worry about that part of my life at all.

but when i heard in class last night from the book of psalms...
"How precious are your thoughts to me, O God. How great is the sum of them." (NKJV)
the New Living Translation puts it this way...
"How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They can not be numbered." 

it blew my mind.
God thinks thoughts about me more times than i can count?
it's hard to imagine, and seriously hard to believe!

reading this chapter can change you - if you really think about all the words.
the fact that He knows everything about me, and has since before i was born. wow.
the fact that He knows the words i am going to say before i say them. wow.
the fact that He actually LOVES me even though he knows those things? wow!

i guess when i think about somebody thinking about me all the time?
i would imagine that person to really love and adore me.
when i think about someone constantly, it's the people that i love the most.
i love thinking about the sweet things adam does for me.
i love thinking about riley having to hug and kiss me every time i leave the room
i love thinking about aj saying that he is so glad i'm his mom
those things make me smile.
they make me happy.

that's why it's so hard for me to imagine the God of this universe
thinking about me!
does he smile when he thinks about the last time i thanked Him for something?
does he laugh when he watches me try to do too many things at once?
it's hard to picture.
i'm just being honest here.

why is it so easy for me to believe the promise that He is preparing heaven for me,
but hard to believe that he is thinking about me?

i guess because i am not realizing how much God actually loves me.
it's too much for me to comprehend.
it's incredible and amazing to even think about.

you know what?
the days when i feel like adam is totally in love with me
the days when i can just tell my boys want to be with me every second...
i act different!
i want to do things for them more than i normally do.

shouldn't it be the same with God?
the fact that He is thinking of me...
should make me act different.
so i think i will.

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