Feb 28, 2010

Worship Time

Last night we had some friends over.  It was a great time, all the kids played with each other and we enjoyed delicious pizza and brownies.  As the night wore on, the children were either in bed or quieted down as we all settled into the living room



And thus began the impromptu worship time.

My husband is a talented guitarist and our friends - he is an excellent drummer and his wife is a most amazing singer!  So I settled on the couch with their lovely daughter and the two of us enjoyed this spontaneous concert.

Amid the steady rhythm of Matt's drum, the sweet sounds of my husbands guitar and the beautiful melodies of Chrissy's voice I could have drifted away.  I have had the pleasure of hearing the three of them play together before and it is has always been something wonderful to experience!  When they are using  the musical gifts that God has bestowed on them to worship Him, it is delightful.  They are all so serene and how they all work together to create this musical moment is something to behold.  They do not practice before hand, they are quiet, few words are spoken and they do not communicate in anyway I can see.  But some how they are always in time, rhythm and sync.

When we worship God from our hearts, it is a most amazing and life giving experience.  Though tired, as the night was late and the day busy, I was refreshed and blessed to be there listening to a God inspired worship time.





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Feb 26, 2010

Coffee Shop

I love a coffee shop!

I must say that being a mom with two young kids and no access to a car, I miss going to coffee shops.  In my younger days ('cause I'm so old *wink*) I ed to spend many an hour at a local java joint.  For those of you who remember the old TV show "Cheers", that was what it was like for me.  You know the people who worked there, they knew you - well by drink anyways- you saw familiar faces, enjoyed the company of friends and all your worries were either resolved or melted away when you were there.

Now when I am blessed with the opportunity to escape to a coffee shop I saviour it.  I enjoy the conversations, the fellowship, the beverages and all the people.  You see I am a people watcher.  I love to take them in, study them, try to learn something about them - even if I'm only seeing them for a brief moment in the line for their next caffeine fix.  I especially love to sketch them.

Yes for those of you who do not know I am an 'artist'.  Well take the term as you may but yes when at a coffee shop my hands get itching to start sketching.  So between good friends, great drinks, wondrous smells and interesting people I get lost.  It's a nice escape.

I found this 'quote' on a bag that contained a left-over goody that I had brought home the other night when I was at a coffee place.  I think it describes my thoughts nicely:      
                       Flavours my senses
                       Sweetens my disposition
                       Stirs my imagination
                       Nourishes my dreams.

So maybe I have an extreme addition to all that is caffeinated or maybe the smell of coffee brewing just invokes in me a sense of peace, whatever it may be - I love a coffee shop!

Feb 23, 2010

Snow Day

Well what a white wintry world I woke up to today!   Gotta love Ontario winters, one moment you think Spring is just around the corner - the next we are shoveling our cars out from under a pile of snow.

I took my 2 year old, Olivia,  out to play in the snow.  She enjoyed it greatly.  There's nothing like playing in the snow to make you feel like a kid again.  (For those of you who do not get to experience this blessing - you will have to let me know what you do to stay young.)

We made snowmen - as you can see in the picture - apparently it's a Daddy one and a Catherine one (Olivia's baby sister).  She loves them! (The snowmen, but yes she loves her Daddy and sister too.)  When we finally came inside, Olivia turned to the snowmen, "Bye snowmen, bye."
Well we were out I noticed that the neighbourhood seemed alive.  People were everywhere, shoveling, out walking, saying hello to each other and even a young gentleman stopped and offered to take a picture for me of myself with Olivia and our snowman.

It's funny how weather units us as a people.  It's always a 'safe' topic of  conversation.  A filler of those dreaded awkward silences.  A  common joy and a common sorrow.  Where ever you go or who ever you meet you can always talk about the weather.

Well it was the weather today, the world covered in it's blanket of fresh white snow, that gave me the excuse and opportunity to go out and be a kid today.  I guess I will never get tired of a snow day!








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Feb 19, 2010

Noticed

In doing things, you get noticed.

Not always a good thing mind you!  Think of celebrities.  They do ANYTHING and they get noticed.  Donate to a charity, noticed.  Help the homeless, noticed.  Pick their noses, noticed.  Go grocery shopping in jogging pants, front page of the tabloids noticed.

Attention is both good and bad.

I find that when I am doing thins for God that I get 'noticed' and no not by God.  For God always notices me whether I am helpful or helpless.

 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed;   -2 Corinthians 9:8

What I am referring to is being noticed by the powers of darkness.  I find that when I push forward towards God, reading more, praying more, listening more, trying more, growing more, that something will tend to push back.   Now I understand that God tries our hearts, test us for the purpose of good and other such tools to strengthen us, but in this reference it is not so.  I know this because I get frustrated, angry, discouraged, melancholy, and down right miserable.  These are not the traits of God!

It is in these times that one must look more to God then ever.  We must acknowledge where the noticing is coming from and respond appropriately.  When it is evil noticing the good that God is doing in your life (for all good is from God - James 1:17)  then we need to react accordingly.  Praying, reading, studying, listening, growing, worshiping.  It's when you feel the darkest that you need the light the most.

So as I struggle to work through the soon (as in about a week away) launch of our online magazine (www.homemakerdesign.ca) and I am faced with countless, yes that's right-countless challenges I will try to find the light more.  Heck I'll even sleep with a night light just to get my perspective straight.

But seriously, don't let set backs and 'bad publicity' stop you from doing the works of God.  Don't let it hold you back from your relationship with Him and from delving deeper into it.  We have an enemy and he wants us to be afraid, he is our paparazzi and he will be there when we least expect it and when we least want him to be.

But we can say "Yes I know you are there, but I will not stop living.  I will live for God and I will honour God no matter what you do -even if that means you catch me at the store in my pajamas."





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Feb 14, 2010

Winter days.




Ah the ever changing weather in February, how it can play on our emotions.  One moment the sun is shinning and you think you can smell spring in the air...or possibly venture out with out a coat....(you know who you are) the next moment flurries are flying and the sky is gray.  You reach for a snugly blanket and disappear - like the groundhog back into it's hole.

Well fear not spring will come, the snow will melt and yes, you can go without a coat and people will not scoff you.  Until then take each day as it comes.  Enjoy this time indoors  use this time to expand yourself in some way and not in a Canadian winter expanding kind of way...

Take some time, reflect, discover, unwind, rewind (but not too far), plan ahead, take it slow, whatever you do enjoy the excuse to stay in.  February may seem a bland and dull month to many but it can also be one for growth and development.

Take that chance you've been wanting to take, read that book you've been meaning to read, make that call or send that letter that you've been meaning to do and send.  However you choose to spend these flip-flop days I wish you blessings in all you accomplish.  And if you are one of those people who is always busy then take some time to not be busy and blessings to you in all you don't accomplish.







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Feb 10, 2010

A laptop, pudding and whipped topping.

In case you don't think God is in the small stuff, here is my experience.

So for the past week I have been fighting with my new laptop and trying to get it to connect to the Internet.  After 4 routers and about 6 hours of tech support, (not great tech support obviously...) we discovered that the wireless card in the laptop was not good and therefore I could not connect 'wirelessly' to the Internet.

So I was slightly frazzled and well in need of some love, God love that is and He knew it before I did.

So take yesterday.  I went online (on our desktop) and found a sale on a better suited-to-me laptop. Yippee!  So after my lovely hubby got home I went to the store, returned the 'bad' laptop and bought my new one, and with great anticipation I brought it home.

Now half expecting it not to work, I held my breath and Taadaah!  Connection! Double Yippee!!!!  (Bad me, not trusting God....oh bad, but that's a whole other subject eh!?)  So I was overjoyed, not just because I have a laptop that can connect to the Internet but it enables me to work on this blog and the magazine easier too.  So that made a good night even better.

Now if you've been reading lately you know that illness is in the house.  With head colds I get hungry.  Upon talking on the phone with my sister in law we came to the conclusion that chocolate pudding would fill my need.  But alas, my house is not one that comes readily supplied with pudding, let alone chocolate at that.  Tauntingly my sister in law informs me that there is an abundance of pudding where she is and ohh so chocolatey too!

Ah, I say with a momentary glint of enlightenment - did hubby not buy pudding a few weeks ago....had we eaten it yet?  To the cupboard. AHAHAHHAHA CHOCOLATE PUDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!   Tee hee.   Oh yes sister in law you are not alone in enjoying pudding tonight. 

Oh but the yummy picture on the box shows the pudding with whipped topping on it....Oh YUM!  I say to sister in law how yummy that would be and once again with loving taunt, "Oh we have whipped topping here, that is too bad for you." (They don't live close enough to steal it from them....)  Ah, alas, again!  We almost really virtually NEVER have whipped topping.....and when we do it always goes bad before long. 

But in desperation I go to the fridge. *Blessed glow of fridge shows me WHIPPED TOPPING!*  AHAHAHAH!   And STILL GOOD TOO!

NO WAY - sister in law
OH YES! - me

Well needless to say I had an enjoyable and yes simple evening, working on my laptop and eating pudding with whipped topping!

Now I know, many of you may brush that off as just a lovely story.  Or you may think that with all that is going on in our world or in our daily lives that God would not waste His time blessing me with wireless connection, pudding and whipped topping - but He DID!

We can give those we love the shirt off our back, if need be, but we can also give them a smile when they don't expect it. 

 God knew I needed a smile. :)

Feb 7, 2010

Sick, sick, real ick! :P

A friend's photo
Ah the cold and flu.  How it has entered my home and taken hold and for some reason won't let go!  Being sick is tiring, especially when your husband and two little ones are also sick.

OH how I would have loved to spend the last few days snug in bed, drifting in and out of wakefulness and sipping liquids to replenish those that are oozing from my nasal cavities.  But alas the family needed me...and truly, I needed them.

Though feeling 'not-so-great', my two year old brought a smile to my face with her beautiful, sensitive and loving nature.  Tonight, as she was climbing the stairs to bed she says to me, "Good night mommy, you feel better."  Ahhhh. *bliss*

I feel bad for my girls when they are sick (well I feel bad for my husband too...but he whines more)  Poor little ones, they don't know what's wrong. They just know that they don't feel well, and they don't know why I'm not making it all better.  Actually to them I am making it much worse with the constant nose wiping. They just don't know that this takes time, it takes time for the bug to run it's course, and that soon enough they will be right as rain.

 But I wonder, is this how God feels?

I mean, when we are 'suffering' and look to Him with our big puppy eyes, blinking lovingly and asking "Why don't you make it all better, why is it not better now...and why do you keep wiping my nose?"  (Okay not literally with the nose wiping, but you get what I mean, right!?)

God looks at us, He loves us and really He wants what is best for us.  Though we may not see it we need to trust Him.  Trust in His timing even if we feel icky waiting for the solution.  Just as my girls look to me to make it all better, I look to God.  And just as they want to snuggle into my lap for comfort while they wait out their colds, I too want to snuggle into the lap of God.

The nice thing is that even though I cannot control the sicknesses my daughters face, God has the ultimate control.  He knows the who, what, where, when and why.  So even though I could not hide away, sung in my bed, I at least could bring God's healing to my girls and pass along the ultimate comforter's comfort to them...and my hubby too!

Blessings and health to you all.




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Feb 1, 2010

Ummm…

So sometimes I get a real kick out of God's sense of humour.  Take this day I had a little while back....

 I awoke early as in before my two little ones had awaken for the day.  "Ah," I thought to myself, "what a great time to get in a devotional.  Let's start the day off right!"
   So I grab my bible and note book and enjoy a wonderful and fulfilling time with God.  The children wake up and I feel ready.
   My two year old calls from her room, "Mommmyyyy!?!"  I quickly get dressed and then realize that it has been much, much too quiet in her room during that short time.  I go in. 
  (Warning the rest of this post contains some ummm content in reference to things that well you might not want to be eating right now.)
   "Mommy, I pooped!"  Oh yes, yes she did and no it was no longer in the diaper....umm...  So some time later I have her cleaned up, her bed striped and ready to go in the wash....but later the baby wants up now.
  Get the baby, change the baby, grab the toddler, head downstairs.
   As being a mother of two little ones so close in age, showering is not always - or never, an option in the mornings for me.  So as a usual resort I wash my hair in the sink as the girls play.  I go to get the hair dryer and find my cat trying to bring up a hairball on my carpeted stairs.
  Now understand this, we live in an old turn of the century home and there is no carpet other then the area rug in the living room and yes these back stairs that the cat was choosing to remain perched on while she worked on her hairball.
  So me, in my oh so smart early morning brightness start to shoo her off.  This upsets the cat and as she is running down the stairs she completes her task. 
  So now instead of the mess being contained, (though still unappreciated) on one stair, it is running down multiple stairs and across the floor of my back room. Ummm....
  Some time later, the mess is cleaned.  Ah breakfast, the children are hungry....me on the other hand....I'll have a coffee for now I think.
  Get the children breakfast. (which is no small task but I'll leave that for another day)  Kids are situated, oh yes the laundry.  I go get the laundry.  Laundry in, time for my breakfast.
  Breakfast is over and the baby needs her nap.  Phew, you stink baby, time to change the baby.  I take her upstairs and as I'm changing her I realize that the diapers are against me today as her diaper has not contained her mess either.  Some time later, baby is changed, new sleeper on and well more laundry to do....later!
   UMMm...
 So back down stairs, I wash my hands again for the who knows how many times now and realize that they are dry.  So I head to my trusty bottle of cream, press down on the pump and SPLAT, it squirts across the kitchen floor. UMMMM!

 Okay well you'd think at this point I might have given up.  But you know instead I turned to God and said, "Okay, I tried to start this day off right and how appropriate that nothing has gone right since.  But You are good and I know You know all.  Though this is not at all how I pictured this day turning out You've got it in control. "

The thing that struck me most after all of this, was that I wasn't upset or angry or even frustrated.  What I thought was going to be a perfect day because I had "started it off right" turned out to be a perfect day because I had started it with God and He guided me through the rest.  Regardless if I do a devotional early in the morning or not, it is by God's grace that any of us make it through any day.

With all that went on, I saw in these events God saying to me.  Rely on me, trust Me, rest in Me.  I smiled at those words....and then went to do more laundry.

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