Monday, January 29, 2007

The Light in My Life

Many of you know how important light is to me. I love candles! And I love to turn the lights on as soon as it gets just a little dark in my house. But that is just me! There is just something about light to me. It is safe. It is warm. It is revealing. A couple of nights ago I began to realize that lately, just as the days of sunlight seem to be getting shorter, so has the light in me. It has gotten dimmer and dimmer. It is gradually being covered by stress at work, by little frustrations here and there, by laziness, by selfishness, by life’s challenges. But it is still there, trying to shine bright enough to lead me to where I need to be, to where my focus needs to be. That light in me is like the whisper of God. It is that simple touch that is clear when I am silent and only listening, when my focus is once again on the only thing that matters…my relationship with Christ and what I can do for Him.

My relationship with Christ is a personal relationship, but there are those around me who do help that light shine brighter.
My niece laughs and I know that only God could create something so beautiful. My Bible study group teaches me.
My friends surround me.
My parents encourage me.
My sister asks how my scripture study is going, reminding me that I shouldn’t keep putting it off. And so I take the time to open the Bible and read.

I start studying Genesis. And God reaches me with one simple verse, reminding me to clear that clutter in my life to hear him, to let that light in me burn bright once again. I read, Genesis 1:3-5, “And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day," and the darkness he called "night." And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.” The first day, God created light. He created hope.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A Great Gift!

All you gentlemen out there...I am going to make your day. I have discovered a great gift. And Valentine's Day is right around the corner. No more worrying about what to get her. No more endless confusion at the jewelry counter. No more trying to figure out how to top last year's gift. This is the gift of all gifts. It is sturdy and comes in different varieties. What is the item I am talking about? Drum roll please! It is none other than the one and only meat tenderizer.

(OXO Black-Handled Meat Tenderizer:To tenderize or flatten cutlets and breasts of chicken, this Meat Tenderizer is the ideal tool. The Oxo Good Grips handle is sized just right for a sure, firm grip. One side of the tenderizer is flat & one is textured.)

Okay, so maybe I am just directing this to my friend Brad. You see last night, I had a great dinner with my friends Ang, Brad, and Addison. I was close to where they lived and so I dropped in for a suprise visit, after I called of course. While there, they invited me to stay for dinner, which of course I did :). I had a great time watching Ang prepare dinner and helping her out by trying to make cornbread. While I worked on the cornbread, Ang worked on the main course. Her recipe called for her to pound some chicken flat. First attempt: use a rolling pin. That didn't quite work out as well as expected. So Ang remembers watching a chef on tv use a skillet. Second attempt: use a household skillet. So I am standing there watching this sweet girl (and if you know Ang, you know she doesn't look like someone who can hurt anything) slam down a skillet on this chicken. It is loud, and I am pretty sure the house is shaking. And though I am watching her and know what noise to expect each time the skillet makes contact with the chicken, I flinch every time. After beating up on the chicken a couple of times, she decides it is flat enough. Brad and Addison return to the kitchen since the loud noise has stopped. I stop laughing. We continue talking and cooking. And at the end of it all, we enjoyed a delicious dinner!

So Brad, a good gift for Ang might be a meat tenderizer :). For me, the great gift is the time I spend with this beautiful family. The great gift is their friendship and love. The great gift is the love that we can share with others. Thank you Ang, Brad, and Addison for your friendship. And thank you God for those opportunities to love one another! That is a Great Gift!

Monday, January 22, 2007

It was a Football weekend!

Friday Night!
I must share with you the wonderful event I attended on Friday night. It was the first annual Rookies' Redzone fantasy football awards banquet. It is now officially the end of the first season for the ladies' only league and I would just like to thank the great friends who participated! Get ready for next season! I look forward to the competition. Okay, so maybe not so much competition from me, but I do love coming up with interesting strategies! I had a great time and am thankful for great friends like you!

Sunday Night!

The playoff games were exciting and great to watch with good friends and good pizza and popcorn! And it was snowing!!! Finally!!! Can't feel much more like football season than that! I wonder how many people are going to post on the greatest Super Bowl match up coming in a few weeks. I only say "greatest" because my two favorite teams are in the Super Bowl. How crazy is that? Though I will definitely be cheering for the Bears, if, by chance, they lose, which they won't :), I would rather it be to the Colts than any one else. So Go Bears! Also, must give credit to the Colts owner and coach as they gave credit and praise to God. That is definitely nice to hear! Two great teams in the Super Bowl. That is what the Super Bowl is all about. Anyone have a free ticket for me?

Thank you God for everyday! Thank you for the friends in our lives and for the exciting events that just make life interesting.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


No this isn't a post on food, though I am definitely a fan of food :). But it is a post on an amazing friend and roommate who is nothing short of faaabulous!

Dina is a beautiful friend who I learn something new about every day. I never knew how much stronger our friendship would be until she became my roommate. I have been fortunate to see the youth that she touches, the passion she has for ministry, and that crazy, quirky, fun-loving personality that we all love. But beyond that is her sincerity, her honesty, a heart that reaches out to others, her love, compassion, and encouragment to be shared with anyone who needs it, and just her "dina-ness".

She has encouraged me with our late night talks. She has inspired me with her involvement with youth and ministry. She has taught me so much and just held me accountable as well. She makes me laugh everyday! We all have friends in our life who touch our hearts. Thanks Dina for touching my heart and I thank God for the friendship we have. May He continue to bless you and continue filling you with the love that you so generously share with others.

Dina, Addikins, and Ang

Dina, Ang, and Jess (and the hotest wings ever!)

Coach Dina

Dina, Jess, and Sarah

Now she beat me to a post like this, but I had to wait to add some pictures :).

Monday, January 15, 2007

Bear Down

Couldn't beat being with friends this weekend, wearing the Bears jersey, and watching the Bears actually win their playoff game. What more could a girl ask for?

Okay, maybe for another win next week :).

Thursday, January 11, 2007

This Hope I Give

I want to thank the wonderful family and friends in my life who just encourage me everyday. You have been such a blessing to me. For whatever comes my way I have hope. I have hope because of the love of Christ. And I have hope because I have been blessed with your love. So thank you!

This hope I give. My heart breaks as I received some devastating news from a good friend of mine in Indy. I sat here and cried, for that was all I could do. I am here, and she is there and I just want to be there for her and her family. I feel so far. I didn't know what to say to her. I couldn't say anything that would make everything okay. So I just offered her my hope. I don't know what the future holds for them or for anyone, but I have hope. I just pray that they let God hold them during this time and that they feel the hope and love that I have for them.

That is the amazing thing about God's is never runs out. So share it with others. And share the hope it provides.

Psalm 136:4
to him who alone does great wonders, His love endures forever

Monday, January 08, 2007

Kings' Day 2007

Though I didn't put my shoes outside the door and fill them with hay for the wisemens' camels, I did have my kings' day gift under the tree. Thanks mom and dad! Jess and I once again celebrated this holiday with friends. We all stuffed ourselves with good mexican food, played some games, and of course topped the evening off with Scott's famous brownies! It was a fun-filled night and here are just a few of the pictures!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New Year

Welcome 2007! Just need to say how wonderful it was to spend time with family celebrating Christmas this past weekend. One of my favorite gifts this Christmas was this beautiful hat my niece, Rhi, made for me. Love it when someone is creative and shares that with others. Then spent a wonderful New Year's Eve with my good friend Sarah, and a couple of gentlemen. And though the Bear's lost, I had a great time with these friends, listening to music, playing a game, and having good conversation. It was a great start to the new year. And let me tell you about my sweet roommate Dina! Though we live together, our schedules are so busy that we rarely spend time with each other. But that changed yesterday as we spent the entire day together. She spoiled me with a great lunch at The Sandwich Cellar and a couple of intense games of checkers. We enjoyed some good music as we took down Christmas decorations in her classroom and watched some Wawasee basketball and gymnastics...followed by a trip to Dairy Queen. It was just a great start to 2007. Many people have made resolutions to do this or that...but you know what? This weekend was about opportunities. And that is what this year is about...opportunities. So I am going to look for those opportunities to give, to love, to experience, and to grow. Here is to another year of adventures.