Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Please Provide the Words...

Psalm 19:14
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Lately, I have started reading the classics that I have not yet had the opportunity to read. I am definitely not a fast reader, but I just couldn't put down the book, To Kill a Mockingbird (as I finished it in two days), and I am finding Pride and Prejudice just as captivating. As I read, I find myself unconsciously imagining the images that the words describe. I find myself living in that moment and some how feeling the emotions that exist between the characters. What a talent these authors have to be able to invoke images and feelings through something as simple as words.

Words are part of our day to day life...yet, I never really took the time to grasp their importance and the messages and emotions they help us express. I am amazed at those who have the talent to write and speak clearly, to use words in a way that captures our attention and thoroughly explains the messages they are trying to get across. I am not one of those people. I find myself talking in circles adding the occassional dreaded words that show my nervousness...words such as "um"..and "you know" ;). Even when I write, I am unable to really express the emotions I have behind the words. If that even makes sense ;). But I continue to try.

I am thinking more and more about the words I use now....the words I use to make connections with others and develop friendships, the words I use to express emotions, the words I use to tell a story, the words I use to make someone laugh, the words I use to express love, the words I use to share who I am...and to share my faith. Why is this so important to me? Because lately, God has been using me to share with others my journey back to Him. And no matter how hard I try, I cannot find the words that can clearly explain this journey and the emotional shift that took place. So I stutter through it, wishing I had that skill that others have of finding the perfect words to use. I try to just give this awkwardness and uncertainty of speaking and writing to God praying that He please provide the words...

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Let's Get Lost

After a great lunch, we would all pile into the car. Dad would ask what direction we all wanted to go, and mom would answer with no destination in mind. Mom and dad would be in casual conversation while Jess and I giggled in the back...either teasing each other or thinking of the many mischievous ways we could occupy our time...when we weren't sleeping of course. This is how we spent our saturday or sunday afternoons. Jess and I referred to this time as getting lost. We would spend hours just driving down country roads following dad's sense of direction. We would end up finding small towns, discovering new places, and just seeing new areas that were hidden on those country roads. We would stop and walk around...popping into country stores and maybe picking up a small snack and one of those glass-bottled cokes that were the greatest finds. I always thought that it was amazing that we would eventually find our way home. But, now I have a feeling that mom and dad always knew how to get home. There was something so special about that time together. We didn't really have deep conversations or spend a lot of money, but it was a simple way for us to spend time get away for a while. Even to this day I love getting lost though it isn't the same as when I was younger. There is no giggling in the back. I can't hear my parents discussing the day's events. Jess isn't teaching me how to draw hearts and stars with crayons on the back of the front seats. Instead, my time getting lost is filled with good music and great conversation with the one who chooses to get lost with me. Those who know me, definitely know I am not a decision maker. But if you asked me what I would like to do, I can guarantee that in the back of my mind I am thinking...."Let's Get Lost!"

Monday, July 24, 2006

Use Me!

Yes, I am actually praying to be used. Sometimes I look at who I am. I think about how small I am...and how uncoordinated I am sometimes ;). I think about the amount of time it takes me to comprehend something...and all the information I still don't understand and may never understand. I think about the circumstances I have been through and all the struggles I faced...and all the wrong decisions I made along the way. And out of all of that I can't help but ask the questions...what can God possibly see in me?...How can He use me? When I hear about all that is going on in the world....when I am in a crowd of people and feel overwhelmed, my eyes are open to the vastness that exists...and I begin to think...what can I do?

This weekend, I came across the scripture about the body of Christ. As I began to read each word, I began to realize, that though I am weak in areas, God is with me and has created me for a purpose. I may not know what that purpose is but I do know that I am a work in progress and that I am a part of the body of Christ and can do all things by letting Him use body, my mind, and my heart.

I look at my hands, and though small, they can reach out to others. They can hold someone up. They can help carry burdens. They can create something for someone. They can show love through touch. I look at my legs and know that I can run to someone who needs me. I can walk with someone who needs to talk. I can chase my neice around creating a bond with her as she laughs with the anticipation of being caught. My eyes allow me to see the good in people. They allow me to see the needs of a community. They are eyes that allow me to connect with others just by making eye contact. They allow me to show emotion. My ears listen to the joys and concerns of those around me. My mouth can speak words of comfort, hope, love. My heart is open. My heart feels, cares, loves, hopes, heart is vulnerable. It is vulnerable to allow others in, to allow Christ to work in me, to be open to all those around me.

1 corinthians 12:27
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

I may not be much, but I can be used. I pray that God uses me to fulfill His will....I pray that He uses all of me...for I am a part of the body of Christ! We all are a part of the body of Christ...and isn't that exciting?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


I know my sister tends to drift off when I am sharing recent news headlines and stories with her. Not because she doesn't care, but because I seem to share everything I read with her and she has an amazing heart that tends to ache for those she hears about, though she doesn't know them. A lot of people tend to avoid the news or what is going on in the rest of the world because they believe that it is all just depressing. I admit it. A lot of what I read in the news tends to be on the negative side.
But there are those uplifting stories that tend to be a nice break. They are the articles that provide hope. You know the stories of a community that has come together to support and provide for a family who just faced a fire. The stories of a youth group that raised money for a particular cause. Or the stories of a school that came together to create a memorial garden for students and teachers who have passed away.
Maybe it is the position I am in or the field I work in, but keeping up with the news, though negative most times, allows me to see the needs that still exist. I truly believe that if it weren't for some of these heartbreaking stories, some wonderful things wouldn't have developed. People wouldn't know about the fire that destroyed a family, and a community wouldn't have come together. Youth wouldn't know of any causes to support. We wouldn't be able to see the positive actions that take place in our own communities.
I don't really have anything special to reveal through this random post. Just want to thank you for reading and hope that you know what is going on in the world and maybe think about what you can do to help. The news is a reflection of life...there are bad times...but there are good times...and it all is worth going through as active participants.

Monday, July 17, 2006


How blessed I am to have such amazing friends in my life!. I could take this time telling you all the stories and conversations that took place this weekend with my visit to the Evansville area to spend time with friends I really haven't seen since junior high. But it wasn't what we did or what we talked about that made the visit so amazing. It was the people I spent time with that made it unforgetable, because they are unforgetable. Let me introduce you to some amazing individuals.

Jennifer is a beautiful person who welcomes you and makes you feel like you are family. She has accomplished so much. She is humble. She is funny...always making me laugh. She is strong. She is caring. She is determined. She is just amazing. Jessica is beautiful as well. She too has accomplished so much and values friendships, family, and relationships. She shows interest in all that is around her and understands the importance of having fun and living life. She is smart and loving and just an amazing woman and friend. John is someone I was lucky enough to finally get to know better. He is such a supportive husband to Jennifer. He is so personable. It felt like we had known each other for a long time. He shows interest in others. He is the master of the grill and of magic. He has so many skills and talents that I was just in awe. There were interactions with others that I will never forget as well...Jennifer and Jessica's parents...who are just wonderful parents and just seem so knowledgeable in many areas that it is easy to see the amazing influence they have had on their daughters. There were also great times with other friends that, though short, were memorable as well. I know I will never be able to capture just how special all these individuals are in words, but they are in my heart and for that I am thankful!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Where did they go?

The other day I received a letter in the mail. Surprisingly, it wasn't a bill, a once in a lifetime amazing credit card offer, or a letter informing me that interest rates will soon be increasing and if I haven't consolidated my school loans yet, now is the time. Yes, an actual letter...handwritten and everything. It wasn't a long one, but it was a from a friend who thought she would literally write to me. As I read it I imagined where she was sitting and how she probably talked out loud as she wrote it, because that is just how she is :)...and I love that about her. She even picked out stationary that had a map in the upper right hand corner because she knows how much I love to travel. It was such an amazing surprise...a surprise that made me wonder where all the letters have gone. It has been a long time since I received an actual handwritten letter. Don't get me wrong, I love the fast way to communicate via email and phone, etc....but there was something so personal about this letter. I appreciated the time she took to sit down and write about how her and her family were doing. I appreciated the special touches and the even the mistakes she scratched out. I actually tried to remember the last "personal" touch I shared with someone. I think it has been too long. So as I am facing this busy day and rest of the week and weekend, maybe I will take a break and just sit and write. gotta love those special moments and personal touches!

Monday, July 03, 2006


My sister just recently commented on the idea of being thankful for all we are blessed with...that sometimes we can get caught up in our own struggles and challenges causing us to lose sight of all we have. This weekend was definitely a weekend of thanks and rejuvenation. If anything, I spent the weekend thanking God for the wonderful people in my life and for the amazing opportunities that are in front of me. Every morning I say to Him, that my life is His to use. I pray that He will fulfill His passion and desires through me...and that I have the patience and strength to listen and follow. Every day I make that choice to give control to Him, to give my life to Him. This weekend while camping, I had those moments where I just felt filled...filled with love...filled with strength...filled with hope...and filled with excitement. I had time to reflect and genuinely be grateful for each moment. Who would have thought camping would be so uplifting. Maybe it was the smell of the campfire. Maybe it was all the laughter that took place. Maybe it was the good food and the good company. Maybe it was being surrounded by nature...and getting back to the simplicity of life. All I know is that things came into focus and though I don't know the direction my life will take, things seemed clear. That peace, that excitement, that love, and that clarity can only come from God. I am thankful He is with me.

What an amazing camping trip...