Friday, July 25, 2008

Quotes from St. Augustine

"You made us for yourself and our hearts find no peace until they rest in you."

"How sweet all at once it was for me to be rid of those fruitless joys which I had once feared to lose!...You drove them from me, you who are the true, the sovereign joy. You drove them from me and took their place, you who are sweeter than all pleasure."

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Born to Climb!

I am part of a wonderful Bible study called Faithfully Fit. We meet every week to work out our bodies with a walk together or exercising to a video. We also work out our souls through the study of God's Word. Last night we met for the last time until school starts back up and we decided in celebration we would venture out on a hike up to the Rifle Arch. There were 5 of us in the group along with two of my guys...Josh and Micah and 2 other boys. It was a little warm when we started and truth be told I don't think any of us were very excited about hiking on a hot afternoon but we were a determined bunch and we set off on our way. For the most part the hike is not too bad. There are a few steep climbs that gets your heart pumping but there are some nice stretches in between those places that allow you to catch your breath. We did find several shady stops along the way that allowed us to pause and take in the view of the valley below. The stopping was really all about enjoying the had nothing to do with resting or catching our breath or giving our tired legs a break....nothing to do with that whatsoever! Really! There is a place near the end of the hike where the terrain suddenly changes. There is even a bench at this spot and some nice rocks to sit on. You can see the arch from this place and the temptation to just call this the end of the hike is a great one because beyond this spot there is no more path....just lots of rocks to crawl over to make your way to the final destination....beneath the arch itself. We thought for just a second about not completing the hike but the thought only lasted a second. We knew we wanted to complete the journey. We were not satisfied with just seeing the arch....we wanted to touch off we went....scrambling up over the rocks...tredging ever onward. The boys of course were off ahead of us. They decided to take a little more adventurous route and proceeded to climb up a rather steep rock that had some footholds in it. Micah is my monkey boy and he scampered up that thing like it was nothing. Josh on the other hand got about half way up it and decided he could not go any further. The only problem was he decided he could not get back down either. The other ladies proceeded on up the somewhat of a path to make their way to the arch while I stayed behind to encourage Josh that he could do it. He was however fairly insistent that he could not so I being the brave adventurous mom that I am climbed up that same rock so that I could give him a push to the next foothold. It all worked great. Josh got up off the rock thanks to my little heave ho. The only I was on the the same place....and suddenly I also felt fairly insistent that I could not get off of that rock. Climbing up to that problemo....climbing back down from that place....big problemo! I did recognize that if I lost my footing I probably would not die...maybe just break a bone or two and scrape myself up so that was a bit of a relief but I was not looking forward to any broken pieces of my body so I opted not to go down. Next option...up! place for my big feet. In the meantime Micah is scampering up beside me....Here mom you could go this way....scamper, scamper scamper.....Or, mom, do it this way....scamper, scamper, scamper. I have never wanted to strangle a monkey before but at this point the temptation was great! I finally decided that it would have to be done sideways so I began to stretch out my leg....and stretch and stretch until I felt like I was doing the splitz. My legs were probably only at a 90 degree angle but it sure felt like the splitz on this 43 year old body! worked and I was able to slide across the rock sideways and make my way back to the path. Phew! I seriously was wondering there for a few minutes how I would ever manage to get off of that rock without sliding down it and taking off a layer of skin! I joined the other ladies under the arch to take in the beauty of God's amazing handiwork....the rock formations, trees growing in amazing places. As we sat there chatting Josh walked in and with a fist of victory in the air shouted...."I WAS BORN TO CLIMB!"

After resting under the arch for a bit we set off again to make our way back. The sun had set. The sky was pink and purple, an almost full moon was making its way up into the sky. There is only one word for the whole of the experience.....GLORIOUS!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Bring the Rain by Mercy Me

Tonight I was blog surfing...a new favorite pasttime of mine! I was blessed to come across a blog that brought tears to my eyes and a new song to my heart. It is a song I have heard before on the radio but until tonight I had never REALLY heard it. Here are the lyrics:

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I've gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You
Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It's never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there'll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that's what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain

I am Yours regardless of
The dark clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain
You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what's a little rain
So I pray

Holy, holy, holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

The line that really struck me was
"Bring me anything that will bring you glory"

Wow! Anything Lord??? But what if it hurts too much? Wouldn't full complete healing and restoration bring you more glory?? Will I trust You to know the answer to that and rest in You? "You are much greater than my pain....Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty"

Angie Smith...the author of the blog,Audrey Caroline, wrote something that has stayed with me: (you should really go read her blog...there is a link to it on my page)

"In the span of a few minutes, I committed to God that I would stop praying for sunshine and start welcoming whatever made the soil rich."

As I read that and listened to the Mercy Me song it hit me that that has been my battle in many areas but especially with my Joshua. I have been praying for the sunshine. I have been praying for what I believe will bring God the glory. Even though I always finish those prayers with...."not my will but yours be done" my heart of hearts I have been pleading for the sunshine to be His will. I am not sure what the future holds for our family but I know that the prayer of my heart needs to be just that....the prayer for whatever makes the soil rich.....the prayer for anything that brings you glory. "If thats what it takes to praise you, Jesus bring the rain."

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Simple Moments

I have been experiencing blog freeze which in layman's terms is something along the lines of brain freeze when it comes to blogging. Everyday I sit at my computer and I open up my blog and I think to myself "I really should write something for my blog" and then I don't....I get distracted....I read someone else's blog.....I go eat something....anything but write. I wonder what brings this on? Is it the broken finger that makes typing a little more cumbersome? I think it is more than that. I think it is the fact that June was so jam packed full of big things that I don't know where to start. I feel like it all deserves space in my blog but the idea of trying to fit it all in is a bit what do I do instead? Raid the cookie jar of course! Tonight though...or rather this morning....I was laying in bed awake reflecting back on June and everything we were doing and I realized with all the big stuff it is the simple moments within those huge events that have imprinted themselves in my mind. Simple moments like sitting around with my family laughing over homemade ice cream made with $3 vanilla beans or watching my husband cast a fly on our 18th wedding anniversary and realizing how truly blessed I am to have this man as my very own. Simple moments....snapshots of time really. One of our big events in June was The God Rally Project...a 3 day Christian music festival that our church was heavily involved in organizing. It was a consuming thing for weeks ahead of the event and it is hard to believe now that we are on the other side of it. There were times leading up to God Rally and during God Rally that I felt like I couldn't breathe because there was so much to do but now that I look is those pauses in the chaos that have marked their place in my memory.... Rick Wise taking a moment to look a young girl straight in the eye and tell her that she is a princess....daughter of the King of Kings.....precious and special and that because of that she should wait for a man who would treat her as such and not settle for anything less. That was a divine moment orchestrated by God to reach a young girl's heart and give her words to live by.... A break in the action at home and hearing music from the God Rally from my house way up on the hill and realizing that the truth of God's Word was being heard not only by those enclosed in the Fairgrounds but by people throughout Rifle. Praise be to God.... Sunday morning community our Praise Team led by Kenny and with Caleb playing bass guitar...seeing people all around...from different churches....different backgrounds....different doctrinal viewpoints...coming together in unity, some with hands raised in praise....others with heads bowed in worship....but altogether standing on the truth that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life....that He alone is our salvation and that He is worthy of praise! It was an awesome moment that will forever be stamped on my heart! There are other things too about God Rally that I will always look back on and laugh...especially the overabundance of chickens and turkey drumsticks in our concession stand....seeing whole families work and serve together beyond the point of exhaustion in the name of Christ! It was a great event! The exclamation point was hearing a man in church last Sunday share that he had accepted Christ at God Rally. That alone makes it all worthwhile! To God be the Glory!

We left from God Rally to head straight to Horn Creek for a week of family camp. I love Horn Creek. It is such a part of my favorite memories all through my life. We missed last year so it was especially sweet to see the Sangre de Cristos come into view and to pull into the parking lot of Mountain Meadows. We had a great week there with family and old friends and new friends. There are so many simple moments enclosed in that action packed week that I cannot even begin to share them all but a few of the highlights for me were....Hiking to Venable Falls as a family....I had forgotten just how beautiful that hike is....the millions of wildflowers in forests of aspen trees, the creek....the falls...God's amazing handiwork!... Playing Cranium late at night and laughing ourselves silly....the great tv or video games....just time hanging out together....the kids getting to rock climb, ride horses, go on the waterslide, explore in the woods....the great teaching from God's Word each evening.....Communion service on the last night. It was an awesome week. I am so thankful that we were able to go! Thanks Mom and Dad! One of my favorite moments was this conversation between myself, my 4 year old niece Natalie and her 3 year old buddy Ali:

Aunt Kathy....getting down on the floor to chat.....So what are you girls doing?
Natalie: We're just drawing in our book
Aunt Kathy: are both doing such a nice job...I like your drawings
Ali: (looking up at Aunt Kathy very seriously) Ummmm, could you please give us a moment?
Aunt Kathy: Would you like me to leave you alone?
Ali: Yes please. Natalie and I need a moment.

I love 3 year olds!
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